Zadran drives Afghanistan innings

Cricket bat (Gallo Images)
Cricket bat (Gallo Images)

Nagpur - Najibullah Zadran smashed an aggressive 48 to guide Afghanistan to 123/7 against the West Indies, as the underdogs chase a consolation victory at the World Twenty20 in Nagpur on Sunday.

Afghanistan, who have failed to qualify for next week's semifinals, are gunning for an upset against the unbeaten West Indies who are already through to the final four.

After being sent in to bat, Najibullah top scored for Afghanistan, striking four fours and one six in his unbeaten 40-ball knock to bring cheers from the small but vocal crowd.

Afghanistan have lost all three of their Super 10 matches, but they have won new admirers in India with their aggressive and carefree brand of cricket that has caused some anxious moments for their opponents.

Opener Mohammad Shahzad made a confident 24, but was caught off leg-spinner Samuel Badree, trying to heave it over the infield, just as he was looking exciting.

Asghar Stanikzai also made a handy 16. The skipper shuffled down the wicket to smash a six over long on, but was caught the next ball by Dwayne Bravo off Badree attempting the same shot.

As the wickets started to tumble thanks to some strong fielding, 23-year-old Najibullah held his nerve, guiding Afghanistan past the 100 mark.

Windies skipper Darren Sammy said he was resting explosive opener Chris Gayle in this match, instead bringing in Evin Lewis, but warned that "we are not going to take our foot off the gas".

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