Afghanistan v Namibia, ICC Intercontinental Cup, Greater Noida April 12, 2016

Shahzad, spinners give Afghanistan innings win

ESPNcricinfo staff

Afghanistan 334 (Shahzad 139, Zazai 49*, Snyman 4-78) beat Namibia 172 (Ya France 46, Scholtz 25*, Nabi 5-25) and 126 (Ya France 40, Zahir 5-31, D Zadran 3-7) by an innings and 36 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Mohammad Shahzad struck 15 fours and a six in his 139 © AFP/Getty Images

Mohammad Shahzad's patient 139, and five-fors from offspinner Mohammad Nabi and chinaman Zahir Khan, in the first and second innings respectively, shaped Afghanistan's innings-and-36-run victory over Namibia in an ICC Intercontinental Cup match in Greater Noida. The win helped Afghanistan climb up two spots to third place on the points table, behind Ireland and Netherlands.

Nabi led Afghanistan's charge with the ball in the first innings, after Namibia opted to bat, dismissing Stephen Baard in the 12th over. Namibia opener Pikky Ya France and Gerhard Erasmus added 56 for the third wicket but the latter's dismissal set off a collapse that saw Namibia slip from 109 for 2 to 149 for 9. Nabi, who finished with 5 for 25, had support from Zahir (3 for 31), and Dawlat Zadran and Rahmat Shah, who took a wicket each. Ya France was Namibia's top-scorer with 46 in an innings where no other batsman made more than 30

Shahzad, who was Afghanistan's leading run-scorer in the 2016 World T20, anchored Afghanistan's reply with a 245-ball 139. The opener was dropped on 13 off Sarel Burger's bowling and, after reaching his fifty off 57 balls, settled down to steer his side into the lead. Shahzad brought up his fourth first-class century off 156 deliveries and his knock, which earned him the Man-of-the-Match award, included 15 fours and a six. Afghanistan stuttered briefly after taking the lead, stumbling from 225 for 3 to 258 for 7, until a 63-run, eighth-wicket partnership between Afsar Zazai and Dawlat Zadran lifted the side past 300. Zazai was unbeaten on 49 as Afghanistan were dismissed for 334. Fast bowler Gerrie Snyman was Namibia's most effective bowler with 4 for 78.

Playing in his second first-class match, Zahir took the lead with the ball in Namibia's second innings. Nabi had given Afghanistan a breakthrough late on the second evening, dismissing Baard and wicketkeeper Zane Green to leave Namibia on 19 for 2 at stumps. Ya France (40) and Erasmus (35) resisted once again with a partnership of 57 but, like the first innings, Namibia's middle order collapsed. Erasmus fell to Zahir in the 20th over and Afghanistan wrapped up the game within the next 16 overs, taking the last eight wickets for 66 runs. Zahir spun out the middle order to finish with 5 for 31, while Dawlat chipped in with two late wickets as Namibia were bowled out for 126.

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  • Cricinfouser on July 5, 2016, 14:04 GMT

    Mohammad Nabi is now one of the best spinners and alrounders in Afghanistan and World Cricket

  • afghan_Niazai on April 12, 2016, 12:37 GMT

    well played Afghanistan keep it up hope ICC gave us fixtures against big teams cricket is not only sport in Afghanistan its simbol of peace and Happiness

  •   Lmar Khplwak Kharotay on April 12, 2016, 12:17 GMT

    what a performance by the Blue tigers, they showed the world that they can be good test nation too, the young wonderful talent such as Najib Zadran, Rashid Khan, Sayed Shirzad and Zahir khan are the prove of strong home cricket structure of Afghanistan, and Afghanistan will be more dangers' cricket wise in near future inshallah.

  • StaffsSam on April 12, 2016, 12:11 GMT

    This game was always going to be difficult for Namibia expecially in the sub continent. Afganistan are by far the better team and playing it in their region made it pretty much impossible for Namibia to win. Still if you look at both teams Namibia had 7 players below the age of 24 and Afganistan had 5. Both these teams are going to improve over time.

  • KingofRedLions on April 12, 2016, 11:22 GMT

    Scoring 334 and still winning by an innings suggest a pretty big gulf between these two teams. Good to see a chinaman bowler get a 5fa.

  • apdadavidson on April 12, 2016, 10:46 GMT

    Gerrie Snyman now bowls off-spin.

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