Afghanistan secure 3-0 whitewash against Ireland in T20I series

Afghanistan beat Ireland 3-0 in the T20I series in Dehradun to extend the consecutive wins in the shortest format of the game to 10.

The eventful T20I series between the two newest Full Members of ICC came to an end with yet another action-packed match in Dehradun that included Rashid Khan’s as well as Afghanistan’s maiden hat-trick in T20Is.

The day started with Paul Stirling winning the toss and surprisingly putting Afghanistan to bat first. The opening pair of Hazratullah Zazai and Usman Ghani, who had broken the record for highest partnership in T20Is less than 24 hours ago, got Afghanistan to flying start before Ghani lost his wicket for 13 to Boyd Rankin. The hero of yesterday’s match Hazratullah Zazai was the next to go scoring 31 off 17 but it was Mohammad Nabi who launched the assault in today’s game smashing seven sixes and six fours in his match-winning 81 off 36 balls. Afghanistan passed the 200 mark for the second consecutive time and set a target of 211 for Ireland. Boyd Ranking picked up three wickets including that of Hazratullah Zazai but leaked 53 runs in his fours overs.

Looking for a consolation win, Ireland looked set half way through game before Andrew Balbirine lost his wicket to the debutant Ziaur Rahman Sharifi and leaving Ireland 128-2 in 13.4 overs. The World No. 1 T20I bowler Rashid Khan once again showed his prodigious bowling and made the first-ever hat-trick for himself and Afghanistan in the 18th over of Ireland innings when he sent George Dockrell, SC Getkate and Simi Singh back to the pavilion in three consecutive deliveries. Ireland ended their innings with 178/8 to concede the match by 32 runs and the series 3-0 to Afghanistan.

All-rounder Mohammad Nabi was declared the man of the match for his knock of 81 and economic figure of 0/28 and also secured the player of the tournament award for his overall impact in the series including the man of the match performance in the first match of the series.