Afghanistan won’t forget its first-ever one-day international against South Africa after a spectacular collapse at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff.
Put in to bat, Afghanistan was all out for 125 in 34.1 overs after collapsing from 69-2. Two rain breaks reduced the game to 48 overs with the DLS method slightly adjusting the winning target for the South Africans, who chased down the required 127 with nine wickets to spare to claim their first win of the tournament.
The 40-year-old spinner
Imran Tahir did most of the damage, finishing with 4-29 off seven overs. He
also preserved his record as the only spinner at this World Cup to have bowled
more than 100 overs and not been hit for a six. Afghanistan struck 15
boundaries but no
Seamer Chris Morris was even meaner than Tahir, taking 3-13 in 6.1 overs, and Andile Phehlukwayo finished with 2-18 from eight overs.
The Afghans had hoped to use all their batting overs for the first time this tournament and, before the second break for rain, appeared on the brink of building a reasonable score. However, they lost four wickets in 10 balls for a single run at one stage and stumbled to 77-7 off 25.2 overs before staging a mini-recovery as Ikram Ali Khil and Rashid Khan shared a 34-run partnership for the eighth wicket.
Rashid top-scored for
Afghanistan with 35 off 25 balls, including six boundaries, followed by Noor
Ali Zadran’s 32 runs off 58. Both men
fell to Tahir.
Quinton de Kock (68) and Hashim Amla (41 not out) added 104 for the first wicket as the Proteas chased down the total with nine wickets and nearly 20 overs to spare.
South Africa next prepare to play the Black Caps in Birmingham on Wednesday.