Afg v Scotland, Intercontinental Cup final, 1st day December 3, 2010

McCallum rescues Scotland as Hassan shines

ESPNcricinfo staff

Scotland 212 and 64 for 6 lead Afghanistan 171 (Mangal 56, Haq 3-49, Parker 3-56) by 105 runs

Scotland's batsmen undid the good work of their bowlers as they slumped to 64 for 6 in the second innings against Afghanistan having earlier fought back impressively on the second day of the Intercontinental Cup final in Dubai. At the close, Scotland's lead was a precarious 105 after Samiullah Shenwari and Hamid Hassan shared five wickets to reassert Afghanistan's control despite a struggle with the bat as they posted 171.

Scotland's position was harsh on their bowlers who did well to restrict the opposition by taking regular wickets during the first two sessions. Nawroz Mangal, the Afghanistan captain, top-scored with 56, while Matthew Parker and Majid Haq took three wickets apiece to earn Scotland a handy 41-run advantage despite the absence of captain Gordon Drummond with a rib injury.

However, the good position was soon eroded as Preston Mommsen fell lbw for 9 and Fraser Watts departed for a steady 28. Scotland's scoring they stagnated against some probing bowling with Kyle Coetzer and Gregor Maiden taking 12 overs over 14 runs. The pressure told as Coetzer was run out by Hassan and Maiden fell in the same over having faced 48 balls for 4.

First-innings hero Neil McCallam couldn't rescue his side this time as he collected a duck, caught behind off Hassan, and Hassan then claimed Parker who'd remained scoreless for 27 deliveries with the final ball of the day.

"I think in the first few overs of the morning we started a bit full, but about 45 minutes in we started to hit our straps and put the ball in the right areas and after lunch it was really good for the bowlers, Matty Parker in particular put in a long shift and kept asking questions and taking opportunities," said Scotland coach Peter Steindl.

"I think we had a good start with the bat and at two down we started to let things get to us and we retreated into our shell. One bad over set us back but the thing for tomorrow is to get the lower -order to bat it out, get a good lead and then have our bowlers do what they did today."

The day had promised so much more for Scotland. Mirwais Ashraf was caught behind to provide their first wicket the Richie Berrington then nabbed a brace as Afghanistan wobbled on 89 for 4. Mangal and Asghar Stanikzai (26) added 43 for the fifth wicket before Haq broke through and the lower order didn't offer much resistance.

The last six wickets fell for 39 with Parker claiming two more and Ross Lyons removing Mangal followed by Hassan. That guaranteed Scotland the lead, but a few hours later the momentum was firmly back with Afghanistan as they chase the Intercontinental Cup title in their first year of participation.

"It was a good day for us as the captain and coach put me in to bowl and get the match back for us which I think I helped to do," said Shenwari. "I just think the spin worked for me today, I had to work a little but I managed to pitch it just right and the ball turned for the wicket. I hope that tomorrow I can take two more and make it five."

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  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2010, 13:59 GMT

    @ Zalmai Salarzai: Afghanistan team are doing quiet well and there is no doubt about that. But I can't with you on the factor that beating Pakistan's third string team in an 20-20 match prove Afghanistan as a powerful team. You know 20-20 is a lighter version of cricket and payed only for fun. The duration of this version gives every team an almost equal opportunity of winning. Like Netherlands defeated England in 2009 20-20 WC. But is extremely difficult to repeat this in ODIs or Tests. So we should not take 20-20 result seriously, and definitely not for taking decisions. Another thing you said that BD or Pakistan are not willing to play with Afghans. Reality is they already have a pact FTP for next several years.

    I wish every success for Afghanistan. I'm sure in near future it will be able to play with top ranked team.

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2010, 9:17 GMT

    It's so demoralizing when the Asian teams like Bangladesh, or Pakistan are not ready to play this great afghan team, they should have supported the afghan team by playing them, especially Bangladesh, this Asia cup would have been far better when there were afghans, I have seen Hong Kong playing in Asia Cup, they are not better than the Afghans, what about Bangladesh when they played , But I got really sadden by one of the Asian cricket council member guy, He was comparing Afghans with, Nepal, Bhutan, Hong Kong. I would ask this guy haven't you watched, they beat Pakistan.

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2010, 3:07 GMT

    yes , well done Hamid Hassan ,Shapoor zadran and Mirvis Ashraf .....they really played very well today ....I pray to stand our wickets for long and do better like our bowlers . Thanks .

  • Andrew on December 2, 2010, 23:32 GMT

    I like both teams but the feel good story is Afghanistan. C'mon Afghans - make em work hard Scotland!

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