Netherlands secure slim lead on bowlers' day
Netherlands 133 (Dawlatzai 4-24, Zadran 4-45) & 7 for 1 (Dawlatzai 1-1) lead Afghanistan 129 (Mangal 67, Bukhari 6-43) by 11 runs
Day one of the Afghanistan-Netherlands Intercontinental Cup clash in Sharjah belonged to the bowlers. Twenty-one wickets fell and Netherlands, driven by a career-best 6 for 43 from Mudassar Bukhari, secured a four-run first-innings lead. Afghanistan did not concede any sort of advantage though, knocking over Stephan Myburgh in the three-over spell they had against the Netherlands batsmen in the second innings late in the day.
Netherlands were asked to bat, and found the going tough against the fast-bowling pair of Izatullah Dawlatzai and Dawlat Zadran. They claimed four apiece, as none of the batsmen could manage more than No. 10 Tom Heggelman's 29. Afghanistan seemed to hold the early edge after bowling out Netherlands for 133, but that was completely blunted by Bukhari. If not for a brisk 67 from their captain Nawroz Mangal, Afghanistan would have fallen much shorter than their 129. However, the momentum swung once more, with Afghanistan striking that early blow in Netherlands' second innings just prior to stumps, leaving them 7 for 1.