• Rashid secures Afghanistan’s record-breaking win

    Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan showed once again why he’s at the summit of the ICC T20I bowler rankings with a destructive display against Ireland to secure Saturday’s Turbo Bowler accolade, writes ANITHA MADIKIZELA.

    The prolific Afghan bamboozled Ireland’s batsmen with his ever-reliable wrist spin and walked away with 4-24 in his four overs as Afghanistan secured a resounding 84-run win in Dehradun. The No 8-ranked T20I team began by posting a record-breaking 278-3 in their 20 overs at a stunning 13.9 runs per over, beating Australia’s previous record innings total by 15 runs.

    READ ALSO: Rashid rises to No 1 spot

    Ireland began their innings well with captain Paul Stirling (91 runs off 50 balls, 12×4, 2×6) and Kevin O’Brien (37 off 25 balls, 2×4, 2×6) starring with the bat. The pair were both dismissed in the 14th over having laid a substantial platform for the Irish to stage a monumental chase. Khan quickly dispelled any Irish hopes of making history by dismissing Andy Balbirnie and Lorcan Tucker in quick succession.

    He followed that up by bowling George Dockrell for a duck, before getting rid of dangerman Shane Getkate (24 off 16 balls, 1×4, 2×6) just as he was getting into his stride. The wily leg-spinner helped Afghanistan to an unassailable 2-0 lead in their three-match series against the visitors.

    Afghanistan’s record-shattering innings was set up with an astonishing 236-run stand between Usman Ghani (73 off 48 balls, 7×4, 3×6) and Hazratullah Zazai – the biggest partnership for any wicket in T20 cricket history. Zazai finished with a career-best 162 not out off just 62 deliveries, an innings which was peppered with 11 fours and a breathtaking 16 sixes.

    The opener’s sensational 16-hitting spree ranks first on the list of the most sixes in a T20 inning, beating Aaron Finch’s previous best of 14. Zazai fell just 10 runs short of Finch’s record T20 score of 172, ranking second on the list.

    READ ALSO: Afghans qualify for WT20 before 2014 champs

    The final T20I of the three-match series will take place on Sunday with Afghanistan looking to complete a commanding whitewash over the touring Irish.


    Photo: Twitter