Afghanistan U-19 team warmed up for their World Cup wam-up matches in the next coming days by defeating Central Districts XI team at Nelson Park in Napier.
Afghanistan’s total of 242 in 50 overs was largely due to opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz’s sparkling innings of 127 from 135 deliveries, who held one end of the innings while CD bowlers kept picking regular wickets to stop the scoring from the other end. Cameos down the order from Waqarullah Ishaq (27 off 38) and Qais Ahmad (23 off 20) helped towards the end before getting bowled out on the final ball of the innings.
Regular skipper, Naveen-ul-Haq and spin sensation, Mujeeb Zadran did not take the field for this game and will definitely be back for the official warm-up fixtures before the main draw.
Brad Schumilian (3/26), Joey Field (2/34) and Dane Watson (2/38) were the pick of the bowlers for Central Districts XI side.
4 Central Districts batsmen got good starts but lots of deliveries were used up to keep the innings going and eventually with the asking rate on the rise, wickets started tumbling and in the end, it was too much of a ask from the tailenders as CD XI finished on 223/9 in their 50 overs to lose the contest by 19 runs.
Bayley Wiggins (60 off 116), Brad Schumilian (57 off 72), Matt Edmondson (37 off 50) and Kurtis Weeks (35 n.o off 32) scored the majority of the CD runs but the Afghan bowlers did not let them take the attack to them by bowling nagging line and lengths throughout the innings.
Wafadar Momand (3/32) and Yosuf Zazi (2/40) were the pick of the bowlers for Afghanistan U-19 with Zahiv Pakten and Qais Ahmad picking up a wicket apiece. Nisar Wahadat contributed for 2 run-outs in the innings.