Afghanistan secure historic win against Australia to stay alive in T20 World Cup

Written by Vishwas Gupta

Afghanistan made history after recording their maiden win over Australia in international cricket. Rashid Khan’s men defeated the Aussies by 21 runs in the T20 World Cup 2024 Super 8 match at the Arnos Vale Ground in Kingstown, St Vincent. The Afghans had lost 4 ODIs and a T20I before their last game, but this time around, they made sure of going past the finish line.

With the win, Afghanistan stayed alive in the competition. Najmul Hossain Shanto’s Bangladesh, who lost to India by 50 runs, also kept breathing. India, on the other hand, will have to wait longer to secure their berth in the semi-finals. Australia’s fate in the tournament now depends on the last 2 matches of Group 2.

After being asked to bat first, Afghanistan got themselves up to a decent score of 148 for 6. Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran put on 118 runs for the opening wicket off 15.5 overs. The duo also racked up their third century stand in the ongoing edition of the mega event after the games against Uganda and New Zealand. Gurbaz, the leading run-scorer of the tournament, scored 60 runs off 49 balls with the help of 4 fours and 4 sixes.

Ibrahim was a little more sedate after he managed 51 runs off 48 balls with 6 fours. Marcus Stoinis separated the duo after getting rid of Gurbaz, who was well and truly capable of taking the game away from Australia. From there on, the Afghans lost wickets in a hurry and never got the desired acceleration in the death overs.

Pat Cummins got the wickets of Rashid Khan, Karim Janat and Gulbadin Naib to finish with figures of 4-0-28-3. Most importantly, he made history by becoming the first bowler to pick up multiple hat-tricks in T20 World Cups. Adam Zampa also continued his impressive run of form with figures of 4-0-28-0.

Afghanistan made a stupendous start as Naveen-ul-Haq dismissed Travis Head for a duck, after which Mohammad Nabi got the better of David Warner. Mitchell Marsh also fell cheaply as he became Naveen’s second victim. Naveen was highly impressive after he finished with figures of 4-0-20-3. However, it was Gulbadin Naib who delivered the knockout punch.

Naib picked up 4 wickets, but it was his wicket of Glenn Maxwell that changed the course of the match. Maxwell, who scored a double hundred against them in the ODI World Cup last year, threatened them once again. This time around, Maxwell scored 59 runs off 41 balls with 6 fours and 3 sixes. He got out with Australia still needing 43 runs off 32 balls.

From there on, the 2021 champions completely lost their way and were bowled out for 127 in 19.2 overs. Naib won the Player of the Match award after figures of 4-0-20-4. Azmatullah Omarzai dismissed Adam Zampa to pull the curtains down on the match.

About the author

Vishwas Gupta