Nabi, Shahzad give Afghanistan edge over Namibia


Mohammad Shahzad’s unbeaten 74 and a five-wicket haul by Mohammad Nabi gave Afghanistan a clear edge over Namibia in their four-day Intercontinental Cup match in India.

The national squad gained dominance on the first day of the match in Greater Noida on Sunday, scoring 126 runs for the loss of one wicket, Farid Hotak, the Afghanistan Cricket Board spokesman said.

Hotak said Namibia, deciding to bat first after winning the toss, were skittled out for 172. Nabi and Zahir Khan did not allow the opposition to settle after the 41-run opening stand was broken.

Nabi and Zahir proved their class as Namibia folded for 126 runs. Shahzad smashed an aggressive fifty off 57 deliveries, as Noor Ali Zadran chipped in with 29 before being trapped lbw.

Hotak said Afghanistan, placed in fifth spot in the Intercontinental Cup standings, were trailing by just 46 runs with nine wickets in hand at the draw of stumps on the first day. Namibia is in seventh place.

Seeking to leapfrog their way to third place, the former champions are required to win the 20 maximum points on offer. Their first match against Scotland ended in a draw but they thrashed PNG in November last year in the second encounter.

Namibia are in seventh place, with one victory and one loss. They outplayed Hong Kong in May, but lost to Ireland in October by an innings and 107 runs.

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