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Right then. 3-0 to Afghanistan. They were expected to win and thoroughly deserved to win too. They continue to take giant steps in international cricket. Ireland, on the other hand, can only hope to learn from this for the better. The format switches now as ODIs begin. The first of 5 will be played on Thursday, February 28, 2019 at 1 pm local (0730 GMT). Do join us then. ADIOS! TAKE CARE!
Victorious Afghanistan captain, Asghar Afghan thanks the almighty for helping them win the series. Says that this is for the people of Afghanistan. Admits that there is a heavy workload leading into the World Cup and hence a few players will be flown in for the ODIs. Thanks (in Pashto) to the crowd for supporting in large numbers.
MOHAMMAD NABI HAS BEEN NAMED THE MAN OF THE MATCH FOR HIS 81 FROM 36 BALLS. Says that he is feeling very good about the fact that if he could not take wickets from the ball, he could do well with the bat and on the field. On his Big Bash experience, Nabi says that it does a world of good to the other members after sharing. MOHAMMAD NABI IS ALSO NAMED THE MAN OF THE SERIES.
Ireland captain, Paul Stirling says that they played better today, managing to spend some time in the middle. Adds that they were not far away from a win. Hopes that down the line, the guys from the middle order will learn to chip in and finish off games. On the upcoming ODI series, Stirling says that a few new guys are coming in which promises to be an exciting package.
Earlier, in the first innings, it was a Mohammad Nabi show with the bat as his 81 from 36 catapulted the home side post 200. The Irish struggled with the ball again with only George Dockrell standing out. Who will be the Man Of The Match? Nabi, or Rashid? Stay tuned for the presentation...
Kevin O'Brien tried hard after that to play a lone hand but it was too much for him to do. Rashid Khan then strut his stuff, picking up 4 wickets in 4 balls to end with a 5-fer. Mohammad Nabi played a key role too in keeping Ireland quiet in the middle overs, finishing with 0/28 in 4 overs.
Till that 'dewy' moment, Afghanistan were not at their best at all, putting catches down, bowling bad balls, misfielding, etc... But post that wiped off incident, they came out roaring. They needed one opportunity and they got that in the form of Andy Balbirnie. At that moment, Ireland needed 83 from 38 balls. That dismissal opened the floodgates and the hosts just went through.
Ireland began their chase of 211 in a decent fashion, not cowing down in spite of losing Stirling early. In fact, during the 96-run stand for the second wicket between O'Brien and Balbirnie, it seemed like the visitors would gun this total easily. But then came that moment at the end of the 13th over when the dew was swept across the outfield.
Another day. Same teams. Another match. But same result. Afghanistan continue their winning run and maintain their grapple on Ireland. Tonight was probably a case where the Men In Green could have won but after the dew was wiped across the outfield, the game changed totally.
19.6RKhan to BRankin
Full and around middle, pushed down to long on to end the game with a single. AFGHANISTAN WIN BY 32 RUNS AND COMPLETE A 3-0 WHITEWASH!
19.5RKhan to SPoynter
Pushes this towards point and takes a run.
19.4RKhan to SPoynter
The googly, around middle, Poynter misses his flick and is hit on the pads.
19.3RKhan to BRankin
Works it down the leg side for a single.
Boyd Rankin walks in at number 10.
19.2RKhan to JLittle
OUT! BOWLED! Rashid gets a fifer. Does not matter where he bowls. He gets wickets in Sharjah, Dubai, Ireland, Netherland, Windies and even in India. Full and around off, Little gets across to paddle but misses and the ball hits the off stump.
19.1RKhan to JLittle
Outside off, Little looks to cut but misses.
18.6SShirzad to JLittle
Another heave-ho and the ball goes off the inner half of the bat towards long on. Just a single.
18.5SShirzad to JLittle
FOUR! Full on middle, Little swings it down the ground and beats long on.
18.4SShirzad to SPoynter
Outside off, punched through the covers for a run.
18.3SShirzad to SPoynter
FOUR! Full and around middle, Poynter gets down and across, sweeping it over square leg. Too little, too late.
18.2SShirzad to JLittle
On middle and leg, flicked through mid-wicket for a run.
18.1SShirzad to SPoynter
Short and outside off, cut through the covers for a single.
Sayed Shirzad to bowl the 19th over.
17.7RKhan to SPoynter
Full on middle, flicked through mid-wicket for just a run. 3-0-24-4 for Rashid. Can he take 5?
17.6RKhan to SPoynter
Full on middle, pushed down to long on for a couple.
17.5RKhan to SPoynter
The batsman rocks onto the back foot and punches the ball.
17.4RKhan to JLittle
WIDE. This is way too far down the leg side, Little gets a long way across to sweep but misses. The keeper fumbles and the batsmen take a single.
Joshua Little walks in at number 9 with plenty left to do...
17.3RKhan to SSingh
OUT! LBW! FIRST AFGHAN PLAYER TO TAKE A T20I HAT-TRICK! Wow. Rashid Khan, simply wow. One of the best bowlers ever witnessed in this sport. This is another googly, around middle, Simi gets across, looks to flick but misses and is struck right in front of the stumps. Looked plumb and the umpire raises his finger.
Simi Singh to face the hat-trick ball.
17.2RKhan to SGetkate
OUT! Stumped by a mile. Getkate comes down the track and seeing that, Rashid fires it wide down the leg side. Shane misses his flick but the keeper does well to collect and whip the bails off. They appeal and it is referred upstairs. Replays confirm the marching orders.
Stumped first ball?
Stuart Poynter walks in at number 7, replacing Dockrell.
17.1RKhan to GDockrell
OUT! That is a terrific catch from Nabi now! So what if the experienced bloke could not get a wicket. You cannot keep him out of the game, can you? Full and around off, Dockrell gets down to play the slog sweep but Rashid has fired this a touch wider outside off. This means that Dockrell has to fetch it. Hence, he mistimes it towards long on but it does seem like the ball has enough legs on it. But Mohammad Nabi watches it like a hawk, leaps at the last moment, catches it, parries it in the air, goes beyond the boundary and then comes back in to take the catch! Superb athleticism.
16.6MNabi to GDockrell
Driven towards the long on region. The batsmen have run through for a single. 4-0-28-0 for Nabi tonight.
16.5MNabi to SGetkate
Full and around middle, swiped towards long on for another single.
16.4MNabi to SGetkate
A low full toss around middle, Getkate can only get it back to the bowler.
16.3MNabi to GDockrell
Pushes this through mid on for one.
16.2MNabi to SGetkate
Full and outside off, driven through mid off for a run.
16.1MNabi to GDockrell
Short and outside off, punched through mid on for a single.
Shane Getkate walks in at number 6, replacing O'Brien. Mohammad Nabi returns too. 3-0-23-0 so far.
15.7RKhan to KO'Brien
15.6: R Khan to K O'Brien, OUT! Caught behind! My word, Shafaq, take a bow. This wicket is more due to the keeper than the bowler. Fractionally short outside off, O'Brien backs away to the leg side and looks to go inside out but the ball stays low and takes the bottom edge. But Shafiqullah Shafaq gets low and takes a stunner. Rashid starts flying while Shafaq appeals and the umpire raises his finger. KOB is disappointed but that was out. End of a big knock. Sadly, that might be the end of the game.
15.6RKhan to GDockrell
Short ball, around middle, pulled towards deep mid-wicket for one more.
15.5RKhan to KO'Brien
15.4: R Khan to K O'Brien, Pushes this down to long on for a run.
15.4RKhan to KO'Brien
15.4: R Khan to K O'Brien, THREE WIDES. Down the leg side, a rare loose ball from Rashid, KOB misses his sweep and the blinded keeper misses it too. Two runs taken.