U-19 World Cup: Afghanistan shock New Zealand to enter semis

Updated: Jan 26, 2018, 08:43 IST | PTI

A 23-ball 66 from Azmatullah Omarzai was backed up by some precise bowling by spinners Mujeeb Zadran and Qais Ahmad as Afghanistan recorded a thumping 202-run victory over New Zealand to reach the semi-finals of the ICC U19 World Cup here yesterday

Afghan player celebrate a NZ wicket in Christchurch yesterday. PIC/ICC
Afghan player celebrate a NZ wicket in Christchurch yesterday. PIC/ICC

A 23-ball 66 from Azmatullah Omarzai was backed up by some precise bowling by spinners Mujeeb Zadran and Qais Ahmad as Afghanistan recorded a thumping 202-run victory over New Zealand to reach the semi-finals of the ICC U19 World Cup here yesterday.

Azmatullah unleashed three fours and seven sixes as the Asian champions posted a mammoth 309 for six after electing to bat first at the Hagley Oval. New Zealand were bowled out for 107 with off-spinner Mujeeb (four for 14) and leg-spinner Qais (four for 33) mesmerising the host side's batting. Azmatullah, who was one of three players rested in Afghanistan's last league match against Ireland which they lost by four runs, showed what the Afghanistan first-choice players are capable of as they get ready to take on three-time champions Australia in the first semi-final on Monday.

Openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz (69, 67b, 7x4, 3x6) and Ibrahim Zadran (68, 98b, 5x4, 1x6) were associated in Afghanistan's maiden century-stand in the U-19 World Cup that set the platform for later batsmen to build on.

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