England beat Afghanistan after mid-innings collapse
KABUL (Pajhwok): Overcoming a mid-innings collapse and a mighty scare, England beat Afghanistan by 15 runs in a World Twenty20 Group One match at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in New Delhi on Wednesday.
England, who opted to bat first, post 142-7 after losing three wickets in an over before restricting Afghanistan to 127-9 to secure their second victory of the tournament to keep their World Twenty20 campaign on track.
But a 33-ball stand of 57 runs between Moeen Ali and David Willey helped English reach 142-7 and Willey then removed Mohammad Shahzad in the first over of the Afghanistan reply. From there, regular wickets meant Afghanistan were never in the chase, eventually falling away to 127-9.
Afghanistan's spinners dominated and England struggled for the most of their innings, suffering from a regular loss of wickets throughout until the final few overs when England found some form with the bat, thanks to some powerful hitting from Moeen Ali (41) and David Willey (20).
Willey removed Shahzad Mohammadi, Chris Jordan got Asghar Stanikzai caught in the slips by Joe Root to leave Afghanistan on 12-2 after the opening two overs. Left-arm seamer Willey continued his impressive game by having Nabi caught in the covers by Stokes.
Spin partner Adil Rashid used the slowness of the pitch to have Noor Ali caught and bowled, as the minnows struggled.
Najib Zadran was unlucky to be run out by Chris Jordan, as his bat bounced as he attempted to ground it. Afghanistan never got up with the run rate, despite some lusty blows late on, eventually falling 15 runs short.
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