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T20 World Cup | Hamid Hassan’s yorkers dismantle Namibia as Afghanistan record huge win

If the competition would be about Net Run Rate (NRR), Afghanistan would be strong contenders to win the ICC T20 World Cup. After defeating Scotland by 130 runs in their first match, the Afghans registered yet another huge victory as they downed Namibia by 62 runs. Hamid Hassan, who played in place of injured Mujeeb Ur Rahman was the hero of the game for the Afghans as his deadly yorkers saw the end of three of Namibia’s most dangerous batters - skipper Gerhard Erasmus, David Wiese and JJ Smit. 

Chasing a target of 161, Namibia didn’t really have a good start as they lost the opener, Craig Williams, in the very first over of the game to Naveen Ul Haq. Soon Michael Van Lingen departed as well, becoming the second scalp of Naveen. 

Nicol Loftie-Eaton, who did well with the ball in the first innings, wasn’t able to reflect it with the bat as he got bowled trying to hit a ball out of the park off the bowling of Gulbadin Naib. Rashid Khan had to do very little as Zane Green tried to ramp him and got bowled on the very first ball of his spell. 

After this dismissal, the best pairing for Namibia was crease as David Wiese partnered Erasmus. The two were going well and had added 20 runs for the fifth wicket at run a ball. But then came Hassan with his brutal toe crushing yorkers at a medium pace. He first bowled Erasmus and then in the same over removed another dangerous batter in JJ Smit with bouncer brushing his gloves and going into the gloves of Mohammad Shahzad. 

From there on there was no way that Namibia were going to chase down 105 from 55 balls and it was made sure as Jan Frylinck, the last batting option was also removed in the 15th over as Naveen picked Frylinck as his third wicket. From there on it was just formalities and they were completed as Hamid removed Wisese and Namibia played out the 20 overs. 

Earlier in the day, after winning the toss, Afghan skipper Mohammad Nabi decided to bat first and his decision was backed by a good opening partnership by Shahzad and Hzratullah Zazai as they added 53 for the first wicket. 

While Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Najibullah Zadran failed, Asghar Afghan who was playing his last game for the country, scored 31 off 23 and with Nabi’s unbeaten 32 off 17 and Shahzad’s important 45, Afghanistan got past 160 at the loss of five wickets. Leg spinner Loftie-Eaton picked two wickets for Namibia and finished with career-best figures of 2/21. 

Afghanistan will now face India and New Zealand in its next two games which would also be must-wins for them to qualify for the semi-finals. Namibia will take on group leaders Pakistan on Tuesday. 

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T20 World Cup | Emotional Asghar Afghan receives guard of honour from teammates, Namibia

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