Afghanistan Makes History, Reaches T20 World Cup Semis for the First Time

Rashid Khan of Afghanistan
Preeti Bali / 6:47 am / June 25, 2024

In a historic moment for Afghan cricket, the national team secured a place in the T20 World Cup semi-finals for the very first time. Their thrilling 8-run victory over Bangladesh at the Arnos Vale Ground on Tuesday extinguished the hopes of both Bangladesh and Australia, eliminating them from the competition.

Rashid Khan Shines on a Slippery Pitch

Defending a modest score of 115 for five on a surface favoring bowlers, Afghan captain Rashid Khan delivered a masterful performance. Despite facing challenging conditions, including three rain interruptions and a revised target of 114 runs in 19 overs due to the rain, Khan rose to the occasion, claiming four crucial wickets for just 23 runs. His spell proved decisive in restricting Bangladesh to a score of 105, dismissed within 17.5 overs.

Litton Das’ Heroics Fall Short

Bangladesh’s hopes initially rested on the shoulders of their opener, Litton Das. His valiant unbeaten knock of 54 runs threatened to steal victory for his team and indirectly grant Australia a semi-final berth based on net run-rate.

Nail-Biting Finish Secures Afghan Victory

However, the drama reached its peak in the penultimate over when Afghan pacer Naveen-ul-Haq snatched a dramatic double-wicket haul. He dismissed both Taskin Ahmed and Mustafizur Rahman off consecutive deliveries, sending the Afghan players into a frenzy of celebration.

India’s Victory Sets Up an Afghan Dream

India’s earlier win against Australia had already booked them a spot in the second semi-final against England. This result confirmed Afghanistan’s second-place finish in the group and ensured the elimination of both Australia and Bangladesh.

Historic Match Sets Up South Africa Clash

With their historic win, Afghanistan now gears up to face South Africa in the first semi-final in Trinidad on Wednesday. This marks a monumental achievement for Afghan cricket and a testament to the team’s growing strength on the international stage.

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