Afghanistan Falls To Kiwi Power

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Following a precise display of batting in the initial innings, the Kiwis left no room for error in protecting their 288-run target…reports Asian Lite News

Tom Latham’s captaincy proved instrumental as New Zealand’s cricket team maintained their winning form in the 2023 ODI World Cup, securing a convincing 149-run victory over Afghanistan at Chennai’s MA Chidambaram Stadium on Wednesday.

After a clinical performance with the bat in the first innings, the Kiwis made no mistake to defend the 288-run target.

In the first inning, Devon Conway and Will Young opened for the Kiwis and played a 30-run partnership. In the 6.3 overs, Mujeeb Ur Rahman dismissed Conway for 20 runs (NZ 30/1). However, Young played a solid knock of 54 runs from 64 balls.

In the first powerplay of the game, New Zealand scored 43 runs. On the Afghani bowling only picked one wicket.

The Kiwis touched the 50-run mark in 10.1 overs. Rachin Ravindra and Young made a strong partnership.

Azmatullah Omarzai picked his second wicket after he dismissed Ravindra for 32 runs from 41 balls (NZ 109/2).

Kiwi opener Young was removed by Azmatullah in the 20.6 overs (NZ 110/3). Daryl Mitchell replaced Ravindra but could not make a mark in the game. He scored only one run from seven balls and was dismissed by Rashid Khan (110/4).

In the second powerplay, New Zealand scored 142 runs. Meanwhile, Afghanistan took three wickets. The Kiwis touched the 100-run mark in the 18.1 overs of the first inning. After two quick wickets from Mitchell and Young, New Zealand skipper Tom Latham and right-handed batsman Glenn Phillips took incharge of the run rate and played a stunning partnership to give 288 runs to chase.

Phillips and Latham’s efforts helped New Zealand to cross the 200-run mark in the 42.1 overs.

Phillips made his half-century from 69 balls after playing 4 fours and 2 sixes. On the other hand, Latham slammed fifty in 67 balls after hitting two fours and no sixes.

Tom Latham’s side made 250 runs in the 46.5 overs.

Naveen Ul Haq kept a check on the run rate after he picked up two wickets in the 48th over. In the first ball, Naveen dismissed Glenn Phillips for 71 runs (NZ 254/5). On the other hand, the Afghani pacer picked up Latham’s wicket for 68 runs (NZ 255/6).

Afghanistan made a few misfields in the first inning and failed to dominate the game. The Afghani dropped four catches in the first inning.

Naveen Ul Haq and Azmatullah Omarzai picked up two wickets in the first inning. Meanwhile, Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman took one wicket each in their respective spells.

In the second inning, no Afghanistan batsmen could slam a fifty in the second inning of the game.

Matt Henry made the first breakthrough of the game in the 5.5 overs after dismissing Rahmanullah Gurbaz for 11 runs from 21 balls (AFG 27/1).

In the 6.2 overs, Trent Boult picked up Ibrahim Zadran’s wicket for 14 runs from 15 balls (AFG 27-2)

Hashmatullah Shahidi scored eight runs in the game and was dismissed in the 13.6 overs by Lockie Ferguson (AFG 43-3).

The fourth wicket came on late when Boult removed Azmatullah Omarzai from the crease for 27 runs from 32 balls (AFG 97-4).

Soon after the fourth wicket in the second inning, Afghanistan failed to hold their wickets and make a solid partnership.

Rahmat Shah was dismissed by the young Rachin Ravindra for 36 runs from 62 balls (AFG 107-5).

Mitchell Santner dismissed Mohammad Nabi for seven runs from nine balls in the 30.4 over (AFG 125-6).

In the second inning, even Rashid Khan could not stand in front of the Kiwi bowling attack. Rashid was dismissed for just eight runs from 13 balls (AFG 134-7).

Following Rashid Khan’s dismissal, the Kiwi bowling attack dominated the game. Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Naveen-ul-Haq, and Fazalhaq Farooqi had to leave the crease within the 34th and 35th overs.

Afghanistan’s inning ended in 34.4 overs after they scored only 139 runs.

Mitchell Santner and Lockie Ferguson led the Kiwi bowling attack and scalped three wickets in their respective spells. Trent Boult too picked up two wickets in his seven-over spell. Meanwhile, Matt Henry and Rachin Ravindra picked one wicket each in the second inning.

Brief Score: New Zealand 245/9 (Glenn Phillips 71(80), Tom Latham 68 (74), Will Young 54 (64); Naveen-ul-Haq (2-48), Azmatullah Omarzai (2/56) vs Afghanistan 139/10 (Rahmat Shah 36 (62), Azmatullah Omarzai 27 (32), Ikram Alikhil 19* (21); Lockie Ferguson (3/19), Mitchell Santner (3/39). (ANI)

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