Afghanistan opt to bat in knockout clash

Toss Afghanistan chose to bat v Zimbabwe
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Afghanistan have won all four of their previous T20Is against Zimbabwe. © Chris Whiteoak

Zimbabwe were made to chase for the first time in the World T20 qualifiers after Afghanistan captain Asghar Stanikzai chose to set a target in a knockout clash between the two teams. The winner of this match will enter the Super 10s stage of the World T20. Both teams have won two games each in the group stage so far and Zimbabwe’s wins have come defending totals. Their batting line-up has struggled upfront but they did not make any changes to their XI in the must-win encounter.

Afghanistan seemed to hold all the aces, having beaten Zimbabwe in all four of their previous T20I encounters and securing a comfortable win over Hong Kong. They kept the same team from that match for this one and expected conditions to be similar to what they were on Thursday.

Hamilton Masakadza would have preferred to win the toss and bat but hoped the pitch would remain “good” for the 40 overs. “These are the sort of the games you live for,” he said, about the match. Afghanistan will feel the same way.

Zimbabwe: 1 Hamilton Masakadza, 2 Vusi Sibanda, 3 Richmond Mutumbami (wk), 4 Sean Williams, 5 Sikandar Raza, 6 Malcolm Waller, 7 Elton Chigumbura, 8 Donald Tiripano, 9 Wellington Masakadza, 10 Tinashe Panyangara, 11 Tendai Chatara

Afghanistan: 1 Mohammad Shahzad (wk), 2 Noor Ali Zadran, 3 Asghar Stanikzai (capt), 4 Gulbadin Naib, 5 Mohammad Nabi, 6 Samiullah Shenwari, 7 Najibullah Zadran, 8 Shafiqullah, 9 Rashid Khan, 10 Dawlat Zadran, 11 Hamid Hassan

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo’s South Africa correspondent

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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