It was a POOL A match between Afghanistan & Scotland at Dunedin, New Zealand. The bottom 2 teams in the group were battled to open their points account. Afghanistan asked Scotland to bat after winning the toss.
Afghanistan bowlers dominated the first inning and reduced Scotland to 95/5 in 23 overs. Scottish batsmen failed in building partnerships & kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Most of the batsmen got a good start but none of them capitalized it to score even a fifty.
Scotland were looking to book under 200 when they 144 for 8 down but thanks to 62 runs 9th wicket stand between Majid Haq & Alasdair Evans who took Scotland to 210 in 50 overs. Dawlat Zadran took 3 wickets while Shapoor Zadran took 4 in their respective full quota of overs.
Afghanistan began the run chase on a positive note as they got 42 runs opening stand but after the first wicket they too encountered the same problem – lack of partnerships. Opener Javed Ahmedi scored a run a ball 51 but after his wicket they just lost the plot & fell down to 132/8 in 35 overs.
Then it was all about Shenwari show who single-handedly fought hard and kept his team in the contest. He slowly slowly headed his team towards home and then came the most dramatic 47th over of the match. Afghanistan needed 38 runs off 24 balls and Shenwari pulled the momentum towards his team after taking 19 runs in the first four balls with 3 sixes but then got caught out on the 5th ball while trying to hitting the fourth six. He scored a brilliant 96 off 147 balls but the disappointment of not taking his team beyond the line was clearly visible on his face.
Equation was 14 needed off 12 balls when Shapoor and Hassan kept their nerves and played sensible cricket. Shapoor made it easy for his team when he struck a four off the last ball of 49th over. It was a last over thriller with 5 runs required. Shapoor finished with a boundry with 3 balls to spare. In less than 24 hours, we witnessed 2 nail biting finishes involved 4 associates countries. We hope ICC is watching.
Man of the Match – Samiullah Shenwari
Stats of this match –
- 210 is the first 200+ total by Scotland in world cups, previous best was 186/6 vs SA (2007).
- Scotland have played 11 World cup matches, yet to register their first win.
- Shenwari batted for 147 balls which is most by any Afghanistan batsmen ever.
- It was the only 5th one wicket victory in World Cup history.
- 19 Runs stand between Hameed and Shapoor is the 2nd highest 10th wicket stand in the successful chase in world cup history.