Ireland v Afghanistan, Intercontinental Cup, Dublin, 4th day July 12, 2012

Scrappy Afghanistan secure draw

ESPNcricinfo staff

Afghanistan 84 and 208 for 7 (Ahmadi 59, Stanikzai 51*) drew with Ireland 251 for 4 dec (Wilson 73, White 62*)

The Ireland-Afghanistan Intercontinental Cup match in Dublin, which lost two days to rain, ended in a draw. Afghanistan, facing the possibility of an innings defeat, batted out 67 overs on the final day for the loss of seven wickets - a commendable effort after they were routed for 84 in the first innings - to ensure the draw.

Ireland had begun the day on 126 for 2 in their first innings, already 42 ahead of Afghanistan. Alex Cusack was out early, but Gary Wilson pushed on to get to a half-century. He made 73 at a good clip, and was supported by Andrew White, who scored an unbeaten 62. The pair stretched Ireland's lead to 167, before captain Kevin O'Brien declared the innings closed on 251 for 4.

Afghanistan were strong in reply. The openers, captain Karim Sadiq and Javed Ahmadi, put on 106. Sadiq fell just short of a half-century, but Ahmadi - who was recently named Afghanistan's Under-19 captain for August's World Cup - got to his third first-class 50. The No. 3 batsman, Asghar Stanikzai, also came good. He saw Afghanistan past the mark required to avoid an innings defeat and on to the close of play, remaining unbeaten on 51. After the early resistance, Ireland struck with regularity, but there still wasn't enough time to force a result.

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  • Andrew on July 14, 2012, 11:12 GMT

    @ irishrover - great comments.

  • Fergus on July 13, 2012, 17:47 GMT

    I think Bismillah Momand you are being a little harsh on Afghanistan. They fought hard on the last day. But we have to remember, they are not used to these conditions. Even by Irish standards we have had a cold and very wet summer. That has made the pitches seam a lot. The Afghanistan players were literally shivering with the cold yesterday. So, I think they were very uncomfortable. Overall, I am sure they will have learned a lot from the tour, important lessons in their development as a cricket nation.

  • Peter on July 13, 2012, 13:33 GMT

    Excellent effort against a strong Afghan team, and without most of our county players. Good to see Boyd is back for the Bangla games. Rip through them, big man.

  • Fergus on July 13, 2012, 12:05 GMT

    I enjoyed attending much of day 4 of this game. I must say, Afghanistan deserve a lot of credit. One for fighting so hard, especially after they lost their openers. And two, for persevering in such cold and inhospitable weather. They were struggling a little, but the tea break allowed them to re-group, and re-assess the situation. It took the momentum away from Ireland who were building up a head of steam at that point. I felt the Afghans really applied themselves very well after tea. It's a pity we did not have 4 days, but nonetheless, day 4 was quite intriguing and hard fought. Great entertainment. And my 10 year old son and I even got a chance to practice in the nets!!

  • Dummy4 on July 13, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    It was a disappointing tour of Ireland for Afghanistan. Afghanistan's performance has dropped alarmingly recently. Though we can admire their resistance on the last day to secure a draw but to be bowled out for 84 and then smashed around for 251 runs like a One Day is way below what Afghanistan is capable of.

  • Dummy4 on July 13, 2012, 11:12 GMT

    great match................................................................

  • Kaihan on July 13, 2012, 4:14 GMT

    This guy, Javed Ahmadi, doesn't seem to be an under 19 guy. He is selected the Captain for the world cup u-19!!

  • Terry on July 13, 2012, 2:38 GMT

    Nearly 2 1/2 days lost due to rain and Ireland nearly won the game against the second best associate team going around. Ireland will play their first unofficial test match soon against South Africa A. Lets hope that Ireland gives them a run for their money.

  • Dummy4 on July 13, 2012, 1:08 GMT

    Afghanistan needs to play more matches like these to get better. However, I personally think that they have to have a good infrastructure and sponsorship to prosper even further. Remember, UAE when they first got the break with their Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Indian recruits prior to the rule changes? They were great in their game for couple season and then their cricket died off due to lack of 'native' support, sponsorship and a sound system. For Afghanistan, their future looks bright with the current administration who is arranging many games, hiring foreign coaches etc. doing even more than fellow Kenyans or Zimbabwans!!

  • Andy on July 12, 2012, 20:00 GMT

    Over 2 days lost to rain, and the boys still nearly won! Fantastic effort by the Irish! Any other Associate team would probably have lost that game - Afghanistan should take pride in saving a game in very difficult conditions.

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