Asia Cup 2018: Birthday boy Rashid Khan becomes Afghanistan’s joint-highest wicket-taker

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first_imgRashid Khan celebrated his birthday in remarkable fashion as he blazed off to a fiery unbeaten fifty in the first innings against Bangladesh and then came back in the second to end with the figures of 2/13 in the Asia Cup 2018.Rashid also became Afganistan’s joint-highest wicket-taker as he reached 112 wickets in just 49 ODI matches. Along with Rashid, Mohammad Nabi is the leading wicket-taker of Afghanistan with 112 wickets in 103 matches.Rashid has taken less than half of the matches to be equal with Nabi and on a day, when his quick-fire fifty allowed Afghanistan back into the match.Bangladesh vs Afghanistan : Match report | As it happenedAfghanistan thrashed Bangladesh by 136 runs in their inconsequential final group fixture ahead of their meeting with Pakistan in Abu Dhabi on Friday.Rashid’s prized 112th wicket was that of Mahmudullah and it was a delightful delivery. Mahmudullah completely missed it and before he knew it, his off-stump was clipped off.Here is how Rashid outfoxed Mahmudullah:RASHID KHAN TO MAHMUDULLAH: OUT! It was just a matter of time. Rashid Khan has done what Rashid Khan does best, take wickets. This one is kept on a fuller length just around off. Mahmudullah comes forward to block it out but plays the wrong line, he actually plays it inside the line of the ball as the ball beats the outside edge and crashes into the off pole. Mahmudullah cannot believe it as he looks behind to confirm but he has to as the Afghans are seen celebrating and Mr. Khan does the dab celebration which Mr. Kohli and Mr. Rahul are famous for. Big wicket this for Afghanistan and they will look to wrap this up soon now.advertisementRight from the start of Bangladesh innings, they struggled in the chase of 256. Apart from Shakib Al Hasan (32), Mahmudullah (27) and Mosaddek Hossain (26*), none of the batsmen could reach double figures.Shakib and Mahmudullah added 36 runs for Bangladesh before Rashid Khan arrived to the scene and picked the big wicket of Shakib.After that it was only a matter of time as Bangladesh’s asking rate kept increasing and Afghanistan looked more and more dominating.Apart from Rashid’s 2/13, Naib and Mujeeb Ur Rahman picked two wickets each. Earlier in the day, Rashid smashed a brilliant unbeaten half ton right at the end of Afghanistan’s innings to propel them to a competitive total of 255 runs at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi.Rashid shared a 95-run stand with Gulbadin Naib, who ended up not out at 42 runs. In the final 10 overs, the duo added 97 runs to Afghanistan’s total after they initially got together at 160/7.Rashid hit eight fours and one six in his superb innings while Gulbadin got five boundaries to his name. In the final over itself, Rashid smashed four boundaries and got to his half century with utmost ease and the Afghan crowd in Abu Dhabi was on its feet to celebrate their star cricketer.Afghanistan had won the toss and elected to bat and initially struggled against the disciplined Bangladeshi bowling.Afghanistan were reduced to 28/2 in the sixth over but Hashmatullah Shahidi steadied the innings. He stitched a 51-run partnership with opener Mohammad Shahzad (37) for the third wicket.Debutant pacer Abu Hider (2/50) opened the bowling for Bangladesh and he got his first ODI wicket in his fourth delivery. Afghanistan opener Ihsanullah (8) hit two consecutive fours before a big one from him landed into the hands of Mohammad Mithun at cover region.Abu Hider had his second wicket in the sixth over as Rahmat Shah (10) was completely beaten by a beautiful delivery which knocked off the stumps.It was at this point that Shahidi and Shahzad struck a partnership before Shakib broke the stand, which was threatening to get big. Shahzad was holed out at long on with Abu Hider taking a spectacular catch to give his senior team-mate the first wicket of the match.Afghanistan crossed the 100 mark exactly at the halfway stage but Shakib was only getting better as he bowled out Afghanistan captain Asghar Afghan (8), who was beaten by the flight of the delivery and drove the wrong line to see his stumps uprooted.Shakib then added another wicket to his kitty in the 34th over by sending Samiullah Shenwari (18) back to the pavilion to reduce Afghanistan to 239 for 5.Shahidi was holding one end together all this while but he was also out in the 38th over as he edged a Rubel Hossain delivery to the wicketkeeper for a soft dismissal.At 160 for 7 in the 41st over, it seemed that Afghanistan would struggle to even reach 200 but Rashid and Gulbadin had other ideas.advertisement(With PTI inputs)last_img

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