Dhaka, Sept 20 (UNB) – Bangladesh need 256 runs for a win against Afghanistan in a dead rubber of the 14th Asia Cup at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.
Opting to bat first, Afghanistan played full 50 overs for 255/7 where Rashid Khan hit an half century of 57* runs and shared a partnership of 95 in 9.1 overs in the unbeaten 8th wicket stand with Gulbadin Naib [42*] after number-four batsman Hashmatullah Shahidi’s top-scoring innings of 58 runs.
Debutant left-handed pacer of Bangladesh Abu Hider endangered Afghanistan innings early, removing two top-order batsmen -- Ihsanullah and Rahmat Shah within the 6th over, keeping the opponent score at 28/2 in 5.5 overs.
All-rounder Shakib Al Hasan got opener Mohammad Shahzad [37 off 47b; 4x4] before Afghanistan reached the 100-run mark as Shahzad was caught by Hider on 79/3 in 19.3 overs.
But, Shahidi continued to score run up to150/6 in 37.1 overs for his individual innings off 92 balls featuring three boundaries before being caught behind by keeper Liton Kumar Das off pacer Rubel Hossain.
In the middle, Shakib bowled out skipper Asghar Afghan and Samiullah Shenwari [18 off 31b; 1x4] at 101in 25.1 overs and 139 in 33.2 overs before trapping experienced all-rounder Mohammad Nabi  at 160/7 in 40.5 overs from where Rashid and Gulbadin started their unbeaten composure.
Rashid threshed Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza in the last over of the match, taking 19 off six balls, in an innings of 32 balls, including eight boundaries and one six.
Another unbeaten hitter Gulbadin faced 38 balls and hit five boundaries for Afghanistan.
Shakib got four wickets for 42 runs while Abu Hider two for 50 and Rubel the rest one conceding 32 runs for Bangladesh.
Dhaka, Sep 20 (UNB) – Bangladesh’s left-handed pacer bowler Abu Hider endangered Afghanistan innings, removing two top-order batsmen for a 15-run in his 2.5 overs in the 14th Asia Cup match in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.
Opener Mohammad Shahzad [16 off 28b; 1x4] and Hashmatullah Shahidi [9* off 23b;] were on batting in the third wicket, till filing this report, with scorecard showing a 43/2 * after 12th over for Afghanistan, the side opted bat after winning the toss.
The 22-year old Abu Hider did this on his ODI debut in the Group ‘B’ dead-rubber of the six-nation tournament, sending off Afghanistan opening batsman Ihsanullah, was caught by Mohammad Mithun, on 10/1 in 1.4 overs and clean bowled Rahmat Shah on 28/2 in 5.5 overs at Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
Dhaka, Sep 20 (UNB) – Afghanistan won the toss and sent Bangladesh to bowl first in the Group ‘B’ dead-rubber of the 14th Asia Cup at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi on Thursday.
Two left-handed bowlers -- pacer Abu Hider and spinner Nazmul Hossain Shanto - are making ODI debuts while Mominul Haque has been included in the Bangladesh eleven.
The Tigers’ are playing today without three key players -- injured opener Tamim Iqbal, consistent run getter Mushfiqur Rahim and cutter sensation Mustafizur Rahman -- all played vital role for a 137-run win against Sri Lanka in the six-nation tournament opener In Dubai.
Afghanistan brought one change in their eleven, bringing all-rounder Samiullah Shenwari in place of Najibullah Zadran.
Both the parties of the day’s match have already reached into last-four stage of the tournament as Bangladesh got a 137-run victory over a hapless Sri Lanka, the side were eliminated from the race conceding another loss by 91-runs in the last group match against Afghanistan.
Bangladesh best XI: Liton Kumar Das, Mominul Haque, Shakib Al Hasan, Mohammad Mithun, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mosaddek Hossain, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza (captain), Rubel Hossain, Nazmul Hossain and Abu Hider.
Afghanistan best XI: Mohammad Shahzad, Ihsanullah, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan (captain), Hashmatullah Shahidi, Mohammad Nabi, Samiullah Shenwari, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Aftab Alam and Mujeeb Ur Rahman.
Dubai, Sep 20 (AP/UNB) — India was rarely tested in a dominating eight-wicket win over traditional rival Pakistan in their group match of the Asia Cup Wednesday.
At Dubai International Stadium, captain Sarfraz Ahmed's decision to bat first after winning the toss backfired when a disciplined Indian bowling attack wrapped up the Pakistan innings for a meagre 162 in 43.1 overs.
India's reply was led by its rampant captain Rohit Sharma, who raced to 52 in just 39 balls and added 86 runs in 13 overs with Shikhar Dhawan for the opening stand. They achieved the target in the 29th over, losing just the two openers.
The result was inconsequential as both teams have already qualified for the round-robin Super Four stage following wins in their respective opening group matches against Hong Kong.
If India's opening bowling attack was sensational — Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah gave away just four runs and removed the two openers in the first five overs — the opening batsmen dazzled the sold-out crowd with their positive intent and a flurry of strokes.
"We were disciplined right from the start," Sharma said. "It was a great game for the bowling unit, especially since we knew it won't be easy in these conditions. We stuck to our plan and did what we had planned to do on this surface. The wickets in the first couple of overs were very important because of the quality of their batting. We didn't want to make things easy for them."
Sharma smashed six boundaries and three sixes, and was particularly severe on seamer Usman Khan in the bowler's fourth over. He hooked a bouncer for six, followed by a stylish pull off a no-ball on one leg for a four to the fine-leg boundary. He then pulled the free-hit delivery deep into the stand behind mid-wicket for another six.
Sharma departed soon after reaching his half-century, misreading the first ball from spinner Shadab Khan and getting bowled off his pads.
Dhawan, who scored 127 in India's opening win over Hong Kong, wasn't exactly a silent partner and he too played some audacious shots before cutting Faheem Ashraf straight into the hands of Babar Azam at backward point four runs short of a half century.
Ambati Rayudu and Dinesh Karthik (both unbeaten on 31) then saw the defending champions home.
Earlier, a third-wicket partnership of 80 between Azam (47) and Shoaib Malik (43) could not put Pakistan on the path to recovery.
Azam was bowled with the score on 85 after he tried to step out to left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav and missed the line completely, and the next four wickets could only put together 56 runs as they struggled against the flattish off-spin bowling of part-timer Kedar Jadhav.
Bumrah, coming back into the team after getting a rest against Hong Kong on Tuesday, did not give away a single run in his first two overs, and his partner Bhuvneshwar Kumar reaped the rewards as the suffocated Inam-ul Haq and Fakhar Zaman fell to ambitious shots.
Kumar later returned to remove the tailender Hasan Ali and finished with figures of 3-15 in seven overs. Jadhav also took three wickets for 23 in nine overs.
Pakistan coach Micky Arthur acknowledged that his side was outplayed in all departments of the game.
"We were below par today," he said. "What was very disappointing was that we batted outside our roles. It's not Imam's role to run down to Bhuvneshwar Kumar and try to hit him over the top. If Fakhar gets out that way, it's OK. Other batsmen needed to take responsibility. To have 158 dot balls out of 258 faced is just not good enough."
There was a bit of scare for India when all-rounder Hardik Pandya needed to be stretchered off the field after injuring his lower back while bowling the 18th over of the inning.
India made two changes to the team that won against Hong Kong, with Bumrah and Pandya coming in for Shardul Thakur and Khaleel Ahmed. Pakistan fielded an unchanged eleven following their eight-wicket win over Hong Kong on Sunday.
Dubai, Sept 19 (AP/UNB) - Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed is taking nothing for granted as one of the most famous rivalries in world cricket resumes Wednesday when his team plays India in an Asia Cup group match.
The United Arab Emirates has been the host venue for Pakistan in international cricket since a 2009 attack on the Sri Lankan team bus.
Pakistan won the last encounter between the two rivals — a huge 180-run victory over India in the final of the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy.
But Ahmed, who has won 18 out of 25 games as Pakistan's ODI captain, isn't getting over-confident.
"You could say it is Pakistan's home ground, but the conditions here are same for all the teams," Ahmed said. "The weather is similar to India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka and the pitches too are playing the same way. So it isn't a home ground for any team. It is equal for all."
Both teams beat qualifier Hong Kong in their opening matches of the Asia Cup and have entered the Super Four stage. Pakistan won by eight wickets on Sunday chasing 116, while India was pushed hard before registering a 26-run triumph on Tuesday.
The tournament, which ends with the final on Sept. 28 in Dubai, has drawn some criticism from the two rivals over the Super Four scheduling.
Ahmed appeared annoyed at Pakistan having to play in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, while India stays in Dubai.
India had its own concern.
"Playing two consecutive matches is always difficult, especially in such (hot) conditions. We are also human beings and we get tired too," said Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan, who scored 127 runs in the win over Hong Kong.
India is led by Rohit Sharma in the absence of regular skipper Virat Kohli, who has been rested after the long England tour.
Fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah and all-rounder Hardik Pandya are expected to play against Pakistan in place of Shardul Thakur and Dinesh Karthik.