T20 World Cup: Afghanistan seal Super 8 spot with win over PNG

Tarouba (Trinidad), Jun 14 (IANS): Afghanistan have booked a spot in the T20 world Cup Super 8 stage, beating Papua New Guinea by seven wickets at the Brian Lara Cricket Stadium here on Friday (as per IST).

The result officially ends contender New Zealand's hopes of progressing past the group stage.

Papua New Guinea posted 95 all out in 19.5 overs with wicketkeeper batter Kiplin Doriga top-scoring with 27. In response, Gulbadin Naib steered Afghanistan's chase after early setback to seal the win by 7 wickets, they scored 101 in 15.1 overs.

After asked to bat first, PNG lost skipper Assad Vala as Fazalhaq Farooqi who affected the opportunistic runout. His impact quickly translated to the ball, picking up back-to-back wickets, dismissing Lega Siaka and Sese Bau, to commence the next over.

Naveen-ul-Haq joined the Farooqi party in the Powerplay as well, taking a pair of wickets that included the crucial scalp of Tony Ura (11 off 18). PNG were 30/5 at the six-over mark.

Chad Soper and Doriga went into rebuilding act, but things went from bad to worse just before drinks. The pair had a moment of miscommunication, leading to the second run out of the innings.

To start the 13th over, Norman Vanua suffered a cruel blow of misfortune as he scampered through for a quick single. Approaching the crease, the corner of his bat dug into the pitch, caught agonisingly short of safety, reports ICC.

Afghanistan displayed ruthlessness in the field as PNG’s suffered six run outs at the tournament, the most of any team. Farooqi finished with the figures of 16-3 off his four overs. He was named Player of the Match for his all-round efforts in the first innings.

Chasing 96, Afghanistan lost removing Afghan openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Rahmanullah Gurbaz inside the first three overs and finished the Powerplay at 39/2.

Despite losing a wicket in the ninth over, Afghanistan, led by Gulbadin, steadily moved towards victory. They were 59/3, ahead of the run-a-ball requirement at the halfway mark.

Naib accelerated after drinks, hitting three more boundaries, including a match-sealing six. He top-scored with unbeaten 49 off 36 balls, as Afghanistan chased down the target to finish at 101/3 in the 16th over.

Brief scores: PNG 95 in 19.5 overs (Kiplin Doriga 27; Fazalhaq Farooqi 3-16) lost to Afghanistan 101/3 in 15.1 overs ( Gulbadin Naib 49; Semo Kamea 1-16) by 7 wickets.



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Title: T20 World Cup: Afghanistan seal Super 8 spot with win over PNG

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