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Rashid powers Kabul Zwanan to 4-wicket win in APL

Rashid powers Kabul Zwanan to 4-wicket win in APL

Oct 17, 2018 - 00:08

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Spin sensation Rashid Khan’s cameo powered the Kabul Zwanan to a four-wicket win over the Kandahar Knights in their Gulbahar Afghanistaninfo-icon Cricket League (APL) match on Tuesday night.

In his eight-ball knock of 27 not out, Rashid cuffed three sixes and two fours to bring a rousing finish in the last over to the keenly-contested match, which was telecast live by the Pakistani TV channel Geo Super.

Laurie Evans, whose catch was floored in the dying moments of the game, remained unbeaten at 32. Rashid Khan, who earned the Man of the Match Award, also shoe with the ball.

Earlier, Luke Ronchi and Hazratullah Zazai gave the Zwanan a dream start -- an opening partnership of 56 before Sayed Shirzad accounted for the Kiwi, who smacked a quick-fire 31 at a strike rate of 221.4.

The first wicket fell on the first delivery of the fourth over. But only five balls and one run later, Zazai also lost his wicket to an intelligent slower delivery from Shirzad. His 12-ball 16 included three sixes and two fours.

Collin Ingram, who is yet to prove his mettle in the APL, was the next batsman to bite the dust. The 33-years-old South African fell to a short ball from Karim Janat. Shirzad took a good running catch on the boundary to seen the back of Ingram (11).

At 82, the Zwanan lost Afsar Zazai (6) to lefty leg-spinner Waqar Salamkhel in the 10th over -- the halfway stage. It was a brainy ball from the 17 years old. Zazai offered a simple lollypop to Stirling at short cover.

Younas Ahmadzai had his stumps shattered by Karim Janat in the 13th over to leave the Zwanan struggling at 97 for five. The medium fast bowler was right on the money, realising that they were defending a not-so-high total.

Shahidullah Kamal was caught and bowled by Janat, who made things a little bit harder for the batting side. But the dropping of Evans turned out to be a costly mistake on the part of the Knights.

Put in to bat, Kandahar Knights took a wobbly start as opener Paul Stirling was caught by Hazratullah Zazai on the bowling of South Africa’s Wayne Pamell. The Irish cricketer exited for a duck in the second over.

But skipper Asghar Afghan went on to stabilise the Knights innings, contributing 60 runs. He faced 31 deliveries and punched six maximums plus two boundaries at a strike rate of almost 194.

Once again, Zazai held a sharp catch off Farid Ahmad to send the in-form captain back to the pavilion. The Knights were 76 when Afghan was dismissed in the 9th over.

Brendon McCollum departed in the 11th over, caught by Ingram off Zahir Shahzad. The New Zealander could score 16. Barely five over later, Nasir Jamal was dislodged by his compatriot Farid Ahmad.  

The 24-year-old right-handed batsman scored a run-a-ball 28, which included a six and a four.  The next batsman to be removed was Najibullah Zadran (25), who played a teasing Rashid Khan delivery into the safe hands of Zazai.

Karim Janat remained unbeaten at 11 and wicketkeeper Riki Vessels at two, with the Knights posting a total of 152 for the loss of five wickets in the stipulated 20 overs.



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