AFG vs IRE: After losing the first two T20 internationals against Ireland in the five-match series, Afghanistan made a roaring comeback in the third game on Friday. Nabi and Co. notched a formidable score of 189 runs while batting first at Civil Service Cricket Club in Belfast.
Zazai and Gurbaz gave the team a rollicking start to the innings as the duo added 90 runs for the first wicket. Gurbaz got out in the 11th over after playing a stellar knock of 53 runs in 35 balls, including 8 fours and 1 six. Zazai followed him soon. He never looked comfortable in the middle, playing an uncharacteristic knock of 39 runs in 40 balls.
However, Ibrahim Zadran and Najibullah kept the momentum going as the duo added 48 crucial runs for the side and took the total past the 150-run mark. Zadran played a handy knock of 36 runs in 22 balls, including 4 fours and 1 six.
However, it was Najibullah, who stole the show with a blinder of innings. He smacked 42 runs in just 18 deliveries, a knock which was laced with five fours. Ireland had a forgettable day with the ball. Joshua Little was the only bowler who stood out, returning with bowling figures of 2 for 29 in 4 overs.
In pursuit of the run-chase, Ireland fell 22 runs short of the target. Paul Sterling (0) and Andrew Balbirnie (1) failed to hit the straps as Ireland got off to a poor start.
Lorcan Tucker made handy 31 runs in 21 deliveries but wickets kept falling at the other end. The likes of Harry Tector (3 off 5), Curtis Campher (8 off 12), and Gareth Delany (16 off 13) all got out on low scores.
Ireland lost 7 wickets for 85 runs on the board. Dockrell and Fionn Hand joined hands and raised some hopes. The duo added 74 runs for the 8th wicket. However, it didn’t prove enough in the end.
AFG vs IRE Brief Scores: Afghanistan 189 for 5 (Gurbaz 53, Najibullah 42, Little 2-29) beat Ireland 167 for 9 (Dockrell 58*, Naveen 3-38, Mujeeb 2-28) by 22 runs
Follow MadOverCricket for the latest cricket news, cricket match updates, live cricket scores, cricket series updates, and more!