Afghanistan stuns Australia with historic upset in T20 World Cup Super 8 Clash

By Sports Desk June 23, 2024
Naib celebrates taking the wicket of Matthew Wade as Afghanistan powered towards victory on Saturday night. Naib celebrates taking the wicket of Matthew Wade as Afghanistan powered towards victory on Saturday night. ICC/ Getty Images

In an unforgettable clash on Saturday night, Afghanistan pulled off a spectacular upset over Australia in the Super 8 round of the 2024 ICC T20 World Cup, despite Australia's captain Pat Cummins taking his second hat-trick of the tournament.

In the encounter at Kingstown in St Vincent and the Grenadines, Afghanistan, propelled by stellar performances from Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Gulbadin Naib, defended a modest total to secure a historic 21-run victory. Afghanistan scored 148 for 6, with Gurbaz contributing 60 runs and Ibrahim Zadran 51, while Cummins took 3-28 and Adam Zampa 2-28. Australia, in reply, managed 127 runs, with Glenn Maxwell top-scoring with 59, while Gulbadin Naib took 4-20 and Naveen-ul-Haq 3-20.

With a semi-final spot on the line, Australia faced a formidable challenge from Afghanistan’s seamers, who decimated their top order early in the innings. Australia’s Glenn Maxwell, renowned for his flamboyant stroke play, attempted to reverse Australia's fortunes with a scintillating performance. Maxwell's aggressive approach saw him unleash a series of audacious shots, including a shovelled four off Azmatullah Omarzai that left him beaming. After notching up a rapid 35-ball half-century, Maxwell signalled confidently to the Australian dressing room, appearing poised to lead his team to victory.

However, Gulbadin Naib had other plans. In a crucial moment, Naib, with the assistance of Noor Ahmad, dismissed Maxwell for 59 off 41 balls. Noor Ahmad's spectacular low catch at backward point off Naib’s delivery halted Maxwell’s momentum and left Australia struggling at 106 for 6 in the 15th over, still needing 43 runs off 32 balls. Naib's exceptional spell yielded career-best figures of 4 for 20, including the prized scalps of Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Tim David, and Pat Cummins, ensuring Afghanistan's first-ever victory over Australia in any format.

Earlier, Afghanistan’s innings was anchored by a solid opening partnership between Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran. The pair forged their third century-stand of the tournament, a first in any T20I series, setting the foundation for a competitive total. Their patient approach initially saw them score just 17 runs off the first four overs, but they accelerated effectively, ending the powerplay at 40 for 0. Gurbaz and Ibrahim’s composed innings, punctuated by strategic big hits, frustrated the Australian bowlers. Despite opportunities to break the partnership, Australia’s fielding lapses allowed the Afghan openers to capitalize. Notably, Zampa and Stoinis missed crucial chances to dismiss Ibrahim, who went on to score 51.

Pat Cummins, Australia’s star pacer, showcased his prowess with a hat-trick across the 18th and 20th overs, replicating his feat from the previous match against Bangladesh. Cummins dismissed Rashid Khan, Karim Janat, and Naib in quick succession, injecting hope into the Australian camp. However, despite his efforts, Afghanistan managed to post a defendable total of 148 for 6. Afghanistan's defence began with Naveen-ul-Haq delivering a masterclass in the powerplay. He bowled Travis Head with a stunning delivery that clipped the middle stump and then dismissed Mitchell Marsh with a deceptive slower ball, leaving Australia reeling at 16 for 2 in three overs.

Maxwell’s subsequent fireworks brought Australia back into the contest, but once he fell, the task became insurmountable. Afghanistan's bowlers, led by Naib and supported by Naveen and Omarzai, maintained relentless pressure, exploiting the St Vincent pitch's turn and variable bounce. Naib’s composed bowling under pressure, including his strategic use of slower deliveries, stifled the Australian lower order. His dismissal of Cummins with a slower cutter epitomized his tactical acumen, and the Afghan fans erupted in celebration as Naveen and Omarzai cleaned up the tail.

 

 

 

 

Related items

  • Woakes not 'ruling out' leading role at the Ashes Woakes not 'ruling out' leading role at the Ashes

    Chris Woakes is targeting a leading role in the Ashes but is not "ruling anything out" after becoming the senior seamer following James Anderson's retirement.

    Anderson, England's leading wicket-taker, played his 188th and final Test in an innings win over the West Indies at Lord's this week.

    In the second Test at Trent Bridge next week, where Woakes could make his landmark 50th cap, he will also be the senior figure in the England changing room.

    However, Woakes' record in overseas Tests is much lower, getting just 36 at 58.11, compared to at home, where he has 114 for 22.04, leaving him unsure if he will be one of the openers in Australia next year.

    "I just don't rule anything out," Woakes said.

    "It'd be hard for me to just stand here and say I'll be the opening bowler in that Ashes – obviously my away record probably isn't as good as my home.

    "But at the same time, I've looked at Stuart [Broad] and Jimmy [Anderson] evolve as they've got older. And I still hope that I can potentially do the same, but I said I don't look too far ahead.

    "I've always looked throughout my England career as just looking at the very next event, the very next game, the very next series and trying to be in the best shape possible for that game, that series. I think as soon as you start looking too far ahead, you get caught up in it."

    England captain Ben Stokes is shifting the focus to a younger crop, with Gus Atkinson impressing on his debut as he took 12 wickets against the West Indies.

    With Stokes targeting the Ashes as England's next goal, Woakes is keen to be involved with the team, while helping the younger players coming through.

    "You're going to see a lot more new players coming into the team or new bowlers and give guys opportunity, which is obviously what's required to move forward," Woakes added.

    "Obviously, it'll be slightly different if I was given the new ball, your role slightly changes and the majority of my career I've come on first change.

    "Whenever there is a new guy coming into the team, you still try and pass on a little bit of knowledge, and I've been around for long enough to be able to hopefully do that.

    "Maybe I need to do that a little bit more now as Stu and Jim have finished, but particularly on the field, maybe more so than off it."

  • Kumar stars as India complete resounding series win over Zimbabwe Kumar stars as India complete resounding series win over Zimbabwe

    Mukesh Kumar took four wickets as India beat Zimbabwe by 42 runs in the final game of their T20I five-series fixture in Harare. 

    Kumar finished with figures of 4-22, taking two wickets in the 18th over to secure the win for the reigning T20 world champions. 

    Having failed to take any wickets from their 92 balls in their 10-wicket defeat on Saturday, Zimbabwe needed just four deliveries to get their first on Sunday as Sikandar Raza bowled Yashasvi Jaiswal out for 12. 

    The Chevrons continued their fast start as Abhishek Sharma (14) and Shubman Gill (13) fell early on, which had India at 44-3 by the end of the sixth over. 

    Sanju Samson's 58 from 45 deliveries steadied the ship, but Blessing Muzarabani (2-19) starred with the ball in hand as India finished on 167-6 after 20 overs. 

    Zimbabwe's chase for a second win of the series got off to the worst possible start, however, losing Wesley Madhevere for a duck after just the third ball. 

    Despite Dion Myers (34) and Tadiwanashe Marumani (27) attempting to revive a comeback, Zimbabwe failed to find their rhythm at the crease. 

    Faraz Akram's 16 runs from three balls in the 17th over offered slight hope, but Zimbabwe saw three wickets fall in quick succession, finishing 125 all out and confirming a 4-1 series defeat. 

    Data Debrief: India continue T20 champion form

    India have now won seven of their last eight men's T20Is against Zimbabwe, including each of the last four, giving them their longest winning streak against the Chevrons. 

    Shivam Dube took the wicket on Sikandar Raza, India's 11th dismissal via run out in the men's T20Is they have played in 2024, better than any of the full-member sides. 

  • Guyana secures maiden CWI Rising Stars Under-19 Women’s T20 title with 23-run DLS method win over Leeward Islands Guyana secures maiden CWI Rising Stars Under-19 Women’s T20 title with 23-run DLS method win over Leeward Islands

    Guyana are champions of the CWI Rising Stars Under-19 Women’s T20 Championship after a 23-run DLS method win over the Leeward Islands in the final at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy on Saturday.

    The Leewards were bundled out for 68 in 19.4 overs after winning the toss.

    Captain Jahzara Claxton was the only batter in double figures for the Leewards with 25 as Trisha Hardat ripped through the batting on her way to a match-winning 4-10 off her four overs.

    She was well supported by Danellie Manns who took 2-14 from four overs.

    Guyana were then on their way to a comfortable chase at 63-5 in the 12th over before rain came and brought proceedings to a close.

    At the time of the delay, Guyana were 63-5, 23 runs ahead of the DLS par score.

    Naomi Barkoye led the way with 24 while Shonette Belgrave made 21.

    Amara Richards and Sainvani Kambalapalli took two wickets, each, to help the Leewards effort.

    At Diego Martin Sports Complex, 2023 champions Trinidad & Tobago defeated the Windward Islands by five wickets to claim third place.

    T&T restricted the Windwards to 67-7 off their 20 overs after winning the toss and fielding first.

    Nesha Alexander with 18, captain Zaida James with 11 and Denella Creese with 10 were the only Windwards batters into double figures as Kenika Cassar bowled brilliantly on her way to figures of 2-5 from her four overs.

    Kirah Manpaul took 2-8 from her one over in support.

    Trinidad & Tobago then needed 17 overs to reach 68-5. Brianna Harricharan led the way with 17* while Katrina Ruben made 12.

    Amiah Gilbert took 2-18 from two overs.

    At the Sir Frank Worrell Memorial Ground, Jamaica defeated Barbados by seven wickets to claim fifth place.

     Barbados, after winning the toss and batting first, were bowled out for 63 19.1 overs by the Jamaicans.

    Naijanni Cumberbatch led the way for the Bajans with 20. Moniqueca Reid took 3-20 from her four overs for Jamaica while Sashane Ricketts took 2-1 from 1.1 overs.

    Chrishana McKenzie then spearheaded a successful chase with 21* while Jaunel Deers made 17 as Jamaica reached 64-3 in 19.3 overs.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.