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Pakistan vs Afghanistan, Asia Cup 2018, Highlights: As It Happened

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: September 22, 2018, 1:55 AM IST

Super Four - Match 2, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi 21 September, 2018

Toss won by Afghanistan (decided to bat)

Pakistan beat Afghanistan by 3 wickets

Man of the Match: Shoaib Malik

Highlights

01:21(IST)

FOUR! And it's all over for Afghanistan, who fought valiantly. The execution was just not enough on the day, and Pakistan win this encounter by 3 wickets.

01:19(IST)

SIX! Aftab Alam bowls it short, and Shoaib Malik pounces on the opportunity to dispatch the ball over mid wicket. 4 needed off 4 balls now.

01:18(IST)

One run off the first ball. 10 needed off 5. Shoaib Malik now on strike.

01:17(IST)

Aftab Alam has been tasked with bowling the last over. Hasan Ali is on strike.

01:15(IST)

And Hasan Ali dispatches the first ball he faces from Rashid for a massive six over midwicket! But he misses the next one trying to swing. What a start.

01:14(IST)

OUT! You miss, I hit! Rashid Khan cleans up Mohammad Nawaz for 10 runs, and Pakistan now require 16 runs to win off 9 balls with just three wickets in hand. Hasan Ali has come in to bat for Pakistan.

01:11(IST)

Pakistan now need 18 runs to win off the last two overs. This match has predictably gone down to the wire after the dismissals of Babar Azam and Imam-ul-Haq. It's anyone's game from here!

01:00(IST)

OUT: Rashid comes back and Asif takes the attack to the bowler. He welcomes him with a big six over midwicket. But on the very next ball he attempts to go over the top, but is caught at long off. This is disastrous for Pakistan. They need 32 from 21 balls.  

00:57(IST)

Mujeeb delivers a perfect over here. Just three runs come from the over. Pakistan are 219/5 and need 39 from 24 balls. 

00:55(IST)

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00:52(IST)

OUT: Afghanistan are missing some crucial chances at the moment. Sarfraz plays a Naib delivery and goes for a run. There is a chance for a run out, but the bowler doesn't collect the ball cleanly. In the same over Sarfraz goes for a big shot on a full toss but misses it completely. That's fifth wicket down for Pakistan. It's 216/5 after 45 overs. 

00:44(IST)

Rashid Khan comes back into the attack. He is into his eighth over and he needs wickets for his team. But for now Malik and Sarfraz are running well between the wickets. There is no pressure on them. Another five runs come from the over. It's 209/4 after 44 overs. 

00:39(IST)

This is getting really close. Despite Pakistan losing four wickets, the pressure is on Afghanistan to keep it tight. But they have been let down by their fielders. Aftab over comes to an end. It's 204/4 after 43 overs. 

00:30(IST)

OUT: And just when Pakistan were looking comfortable, Mujeeb has produced a breakthrough for Afghanistan. Sohail departs for 13 as Rashid takes a great catch at long on. Pakistan are 194/4.

00:28(IST)

FOUR: Malik starts Naib over with a four through midwicket. That will ease the pressure on the Pakistanis. On the other hand Afghanistan need to bowl according to the field. They cannot afford to bowl boundary balls at this moment. Fielding has been ordinary too as Pakistan get a bonus run through misfield. 11 runs come from the over. It's 194/3 after 41 overs.  

00:23(IST)

This match is currently in Pakistan's favour but a wicket here could spell trouble for them. Afghanistan have enough bowling resources that can deliver the goods for the team in time of need. It's 183/3 after 40 overs. 

00:21(IST)

In other match India won the their match against Bangladesh rather convincingly by 7 wickets. 

00:14(IST)

Pakistan need 84 runs in 72 balls, with seven wickets now remaining.

00:10(IST)

Pakistan are 169/3 in 37 overs, with the match finely balanced. The experienced Shoaib Malik has swiftly moved on to 11 runs. He's been in such situations before, and is just the man Pakistan need at this point.

00:08(IST)

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00:03(IST)

Two new batsmen at the crease now, Shoaib Malik and Haris Sohail. Both are experienced batsmen, but the pressure is back on Pakistan now. This game has taken an exciting turn.

00:00(IST)

OUT! Rashid Khan has done the trick for Afghanistan. He draws the danger man Babar Azam with a teasing delivery, which beats him all ends up. Shahzad is quick to whip off the bails, and Azam is stumped as the decision goes to the third umpire. Pakistan is now 158/3.

23:55(IST)

Haris Sohail comes in to bat, and this is an important period of play. Pakistan are still in a strong position, but Afghanistan will do everything in their power to stifle the flow of runs and come back into the game.

23:52(IST)

OUT! Imam-ul-Haq tries to steal a quick single. He's been doing this the whole match, but he pays the penalty for it now as Najibullah's throw hits the stumps directly. Right after the drinks break, this might have been the moment that Afghanistan were waiting for. Pakistan are 154/2.

23:45(IST)

Try as he may, Mohammad Nabi just cannot manage to break the partnership between the two Pakistani batsmen. Imam-ul-Haq moves to 80 and dispatches Nabi for a four off the final ball of his over. Drinks have been called for, and Pakistan is 153/1 after 33 overs.

23:39(IST)

Pakistan are 144/1 after 31 overs. They are now threatening to run away with the game here.

23:37(IST)
23:33(IST)

Pakistan are 130/1 after 29 overs. Afghanistan seem to be losing patience here, as they try different bowling combinations with every passing over. Gulbadin Naib is currently bowling his seventh over, but the pitch seems to be offering very little to the bowlers here.

23:23(IST)

Pakistan are 112/1 after 27 overs. The two Pakistani batsmen have timed this chase extremely well so far, but all it takes is a wicket to turn the game.

23:15(IST)

26 overs have been bowled, and Pakistan are upping their game now. The score reads 108/1.

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Pakistan vs Afghanistan, Asia Cup 2018, Highlights: As It Happened

Image: @ICC/Twitter

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Get live cricket score updates from the Asia Cup 2018 Super Fours match between Pakistan and Afghanistan on Cricketnext.com.

Latest Update: Afghanistan are missing some crucial chances at the moment. Sarfraz plays a Naib delivery and goes for a run. There is a chance for a run out, but the bowler doesn't collect the ball cleanly. In the same over Sarfraz goes for a big shot on a full toss but misses it completely. That's fifth wicket down for Pakistan. It's 216/5 after 45 overs.

Preview: Score 250-260 and let their bowlers take care of the rest. This has been the practice that has won Afghanistan both their Group B matches, and they will go with the same game plan when they take on the unpredictable Pakistan team in the Super Four encounter of Asia Cup 2018 at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Friday (September 21).

The two teams have had slightly contrasting fortunes in their road to the Super Four. While Afghanistan defeated Sri Lanka and Bangladesh convincingly, Pakistan, after winning against Hong Kong, were schooled by the Rohit Sharma-led Indian side.

Afghanistan's biggest stars have been their spinners - Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Mohammad Nabi. Apart from providing regular breakthroughs in the middle overs, the trio has also been ridiculously economical. Rashid, in particular, has led the spin department scalping four wickets in two matches at an average of 9.75 and economy rate of 2.38. In their last game against Bangladesh on Thursday, the 20-year-old legspinner came to bowl only after 20 overs to destruct Bangladesh's chase even further. The spinners have found ample support from pacers as Aftab Alam and Gulbadin Naib too have been amongst wickets.

Batting has never been Afghanistan's strong point but the likes of Mohammad Shahzad, Rahmat Shah and Hashmatullah Shahidi have contributed enough to help them breach that 250-run mark. Meanwhile, Rashid and seam-bowling all-rounder Naib have managed to provide Bangladesh that late surge. It was their unbeaten 95-run stand against Bangladesh that helped Afghanistan recover from 160 for 7 and post 255 runs on the board.

Meanwhile, all's not well with Pakistan. They rely too much on their openers Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Zaman to give them solid starts in almost every game. The likes of Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik and Sarfraz Ahmed have looked good in patches but have failed to score big runs. Pakistan will need them to bat long, and alongside hitters like Asif Ali and Faheem Ashraf.

In Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Usman Khan and Junaid Khan Pakistan have a formidable pace attack. However, Amir has struggled to get going in ODIs this year, averaging 87 with just three wickets in nine matches. It won't come as a surprise if the team management replaces him with Junaid for the next clash. Pakistan might also bring in Mohammad Nawaz in place of Shadab Khan, who is down with a niggle.

The two sides have played against each other only twice in ODIs, with Pakistan winning both of them. The Men in Green will go into this encounter as favourites but will be well aware of the threats Rashid and Co. can cause especially in these conditions.

Squads

Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Shan Masood, Sarfraz Ahmed (capt/wk), Shoaib Malik, Haris Sohail, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan, Usman Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Asif Ali, Mohammad Amir.

Afghanistan: Asghar Afghan (capt), Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Ihsanullah Janat, Javed Ahmadi, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Najibullah Zadran, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Aftab Alam, Samiullah Shenwari, Munir Ahmad, Sayed Shirzad, Sharafuddin Ashraf.

Team Rankings

RankTeamPointsRating
1 India 4397 116
2 South Africa 3712 106
3 England 4722 105
4 New Zealand 2354 102
5 Australia 3663 102
FULL Ranking
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