And Nabi scripts Afghanistan's first win against Pakistan in a T20I with a lofted off-drive that clears the ropes! The Afghanistani fans were waiting with their phones out and are thrilled. Was overpitched and in the arc, Nabi waited and went through with the thrash down town.
Afghanistan won by 6 wickets (with 13 balls remaining)
Afghanistan show some gumption to pull off a hard-earned win in tough conditions. Pakistan's inexperienced line-up will have some soul-searching to do, but as Shadab said, the bowlers did well. There are two more games to go to make amends. Both are on the same ground. Join us in a couple of days to see if Afghanistan can complete their first-ever series win against Pakistan or if there's a comeback. For now, thanks for joining and it's goodbye from me, Ekanth, my co-commentator, Hemant Brar, and our scorer, Binoy George.
Rashid Khan, Afghanistan Captain: Pleasure to win as we've always lost against them, with small margins too. Happy for the win, hope to continue the momentum. Wearing Afghanistan colours and leading the team in a win is a proud achievement. (On the pitch) We never know the wicket as it looks and plays differently. Mindset was to go and see how it was playing and adjust accordingly. (Areas of improvement) The top order. We need to improve not just for this series but as we get to the world cup. From now on, we need to put effort day by day and game by game, by the end of the year when we go for the world cup, we'll have a fully prepared squad.
Shadab Khan, Pakistan Captain: Tactics wise, we were fine. But sometimes this can happen due to youngsters being nervous. But they need to be given chances, they will come better. As professionals, we can't give excuses regarding conditions. We have to learn from the loss here. Ihsan, Zaman's bowling was a positive. Naseem and Imad's return was great too. We have give 100% and hopefully will do well in the next game.
Mohammad Nabi, POTM: Congrats to everyone. Was a tough score to chase in these conditions. As a bowling unit, we wanted to keep them under 100. With the bat, I wanted to take responsibility and close the game. Most of the guys in our squad are playing big leagues, some have been here in the UAE for 15 days. So we were set. Thirty eight on this wicket can feel like a hundred.
avikrams: "Let this victory be a symbol of the bright future of Afghan cricket and a source of inspiration for future generations of players and fans. Keep supporting your team and keep celebrating this incredible achievement. Well done, Afghanistan! "
Bacha Khan : "Finally we (Afghanistan) beat Pakistan after four close games and many more will come in the future. Many many congratulations to all afghans
Bari Hilaman : "What a win after Long wait Afghanistan "
Brad: "Nabi has proven what a wise experienced head in the team can do for his team. "
Rahmanullah Gurbaz: Exciting moment for us, happy to finally beat them. Pitch was not easy, we just watched the ball and play naturally. Nabi's experience, our bowling was amazing. Najib also played well. The win will give us momentum and increase our confidence. Beating Pakistan gives us an indication that we are improving and hopefully that continues.
11:10pm: Nabi's cool, subdued celebrations from him. Talks to a couple of players from the opposition, has a smile. Does things as easy as you like. He batted brilliantly on a tricky pitch after Ihsanullah and Naseem broke through, but he steered the chase brilliantly. Janat joined Nabi and the duo stopped the flow of wickets but the scoring slowed down too. Janat slogged and lost his wicket, but Nabi continued to chip away. Najib joined him and played sensibly to keep the bowlers at bay. The hosts knowing what the target helped, Pakistan were at least 25-30 runs short. Naseem was good upfront, Zaman didn't have a great evening, nothing of note for Shadab either. Imad troubled the batters, gave away nothing and was unfortunate to have gotten just the one wicket. Azam dropped a sharp chance off his bowling in the 14th over, which could have opened the door but it was not to be.
Fakhar: "History awaits"
Bouncer is just down leg, Nabi ducks and watches it angle away into the keeper. Scores level
Inside edge while trying to guide it to deep third with a fully open bat face off the back foot, ends up going to deep fine leg. Was a back of length ball outside off.
Makes room and Ihsan tries to follow him with a hard-length ball. Najib tries to slap it powerfully over cover, misses.
French cuts a length ball around off to deep fine. Tried to defend it straight, played slightly away from the body with a straight bat
Yorker on leg, beats the flick and deflects off the pad to square leg
Five needed. Final over of the game?
Slogs, gets it off the bottom but it goes flat and is flying. Deep square is in and Naseem is not happy with the fielder not being able to run back in time. What matters more is that it landed and went over the ropes
Nails the pull in front of square to bring the runs needed FTW down to nine. Short ball sat up at a relatively comfortable pace and Nabi whacked it into the outfield at midwicket
Pulled to the left of deep square leg, who has to run a few metres. Allows time for an easy two. Was a back-of-length ball outside off that was hit with a swivel, along the ground.
Thick inside edge off an attempted pull into the ground takes it to deep fine leg. Was a length ball just outside off.
Bouncer just outside off at 136kph. Nabi does well to swivel and pull it into the ground. Goes to deep-backward square
Width offered, Nabi flashes and misses. Was on a full length, the batter tried to go over extra cover
Ahmed : "Why not Saim to bowl here ?" Because Pakistan are bowling their five front-line bowlers. Naseem returns
Smart play from Nabi. Brings down the asking rate to 4.25
Length around off, opens the face and guides the slower one to deep point
Beaten on the pull, he swivels and is hit on the side. Ball deflects to short third
Works it through midwicket
Length around off, blocked to mid-on
Overpitched on leg, clipped behind square. Deep square leg runs to the right and leaps across but can't make it. Slides across after. Side-on replay shows it wasn't far from being a yorker. Nabi was in his crease and scooped it up from just over the crease. It was right in front of the boot
Yes. Length outside off, beats the cover drive. Lands before going to the keeper
Afghanistan now need 24 off 30. They are slightly ahead but Shadab, Ihsan and Naseem have an over. Zaman has two, he'll bowl one. Slower ones incoming?
Back to the flatter length ball. Just outside off, came in and beat the cut. Went lower than Najib expected
Tossed up and invites the slap over cover. The googly pitches outside off and spins away to beat the bat
|Sharjah Cricket Stadium|
|Toss||Pakistan, elected to bat first|
|Player Of The Match|
|Series result||Afghanistan led the 3-match series 1-0|
|Match number||T20I no. 2030|
|Match days||24 March 2023 - night (20-over match)|
Afghanistan's bowlers script their first-ever win over Pakistan
|Mohammad Nabi||not out||38||38|
|Najibullah Zadran||not out||17||23|
|Extras||(b 4, lb 5, w 2)|
|Total||98(4 wkts; 17.5 ovs)|