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T20 WC: Afghanistan qualify for semis after beating Bangladesh by 8 runs

Kingstown: Afghanistan qualified for the semi-final of the ongoing T20 World Cup 2024 after beating Bangladesh by eight runs in the Super Eights match at the Arnos Vale Ground on Tuesday.
Rashid Khan and Naveen-ul-Haq led the Afghan bowling attack and helped their side defend the given target of 115. The second inning of the match was reduced to 19 overs, and the target was 114 runs after Rain played a spoilsport in the second inning.
After the defeat, Mitchell Marsh-led Australia are also out of the tournament. The Aussies ended up in third place in the Group 1 table of the Super Eights with just two points.
Litton Das (54* runs from 49 balls, 5 fours, and 1 six) was the only standout batter for the Tigers after his unbeaten knock.
Soumya Sarkar (10 runs from 10 balls, 1 four) and Towhid Hridoy (14 runs from 9 balls, 2 fours) tried their best to form a partnership with Litton, but they struggled to face the Afghan bowlers, who were ferocious while defending the target.
Naveen-ul-Haq and Rashid Khan picked up four wickets each in their respective spells. Fazalhaq Farooqi and Gulbadin Naib also bagged one wicket each in their respective spells and helped the Afghan side win the match by eight runs.
Naveen removed Mustafizur Rahman from the crease in the fifth ball of the 18th over to end the match early.
Naveen-ul-Haq was named the 'Player of the Match' after he displayed a stupendous performance while defending the target given by Afghanistan.
Recapping the first inning of the match, after winning the toss, Rashid Khan-led Afghanistan decided to bat first. However, their decision did not go in their favour as they struggled to add runs to the scoreboard.
Afghanistan had a great start to the match after openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz (43 runs from 55 balls, 3 fours and 1 six) and Ibrahim Zadran (18 runs from 29 balls, 1 four) played a 59-run partnership.
Rishad Hossain made the first breakthrough of the game after he removed Zadran in the 11th over. Azmatullah Omarzai (10 runs from 12 balls) tried his best to contribute to the game but failed to make a mark after Mustafizur Rahman dismissed him in the 16th over.
Even though Bangladesh failed to take quick wickets, they were successful in keeping a check on Afghanistan's run rate in the first inning.
Gurbaz's knock came to an end in the first ball of the 17th over after Rishad Hossain bagged his wicket. The Afghan opener missed his half-century for just seven runs.
Gulbadin Naib (4 runs from 3 balls, 1 four) and Mohammad Nabi (1 run from 5 balls) did not contribute in the first inning for Afghanistan.
In the end, skipper Rashid Khan (19* runs from 10 balls, 3 sixes) and Karim Janat (7 runs from 6 balls, 1 four) stayed on the crease and powered Afghanistan to 115/5 after the end of the 20 overs.
Rishad Hossain led the Bangladesh bowling attack after he picked up three wickets and gave 26 runs in his four-over spell. Mustafizur Rahman and Taskin Ahmed also bagged one wicket each in their respective spells.
Brief score: Afghanistan 115/5 (Rahmanullah Gurbaz 43, Rashid Khan 19*, Ibrahim Zadran 18; Rishad Hossain 3/26) beat Bangladesh 105 (Litton Das 54*, Towhid Hridoy 14, Soumya Sarkar 10; Rashid Khan 4/23).

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