Former champion West Indies ended their campaign in this edition of the World Cup 2019, with a winning note by registering a 23-run win over a fighting Afghanistan team at Headingley yesterday.
Inspiring performances with the willow by West Indies batsman Shai Hope (77), Evin Lewis (58), Pooran (58) and skipper J.Holder (45) combined with good bowling by Carlos Brathwaite (four for 63) and Kemar Roach (three for 37) enabled West Indies to outsmart the stiff challenge put up by Afghanistan.
West Indies post good total
West Indies won the toss and electing to bat lost Chris Gayle (7) early (one for 21), but fellow opener Evin Lewis (58,78b,6×4, 2×6) and Shai Hope 77 (92b,6×4,2×6) added 88-runs for the second wicket and consolidated the innings. Hetmyer (39,31b,3×4, 2×6) and Hope added 65-runs for the third wicket and boosted the total. After the departure of Hetmyer and Shai Hope quickly, West Indies were reduced to 192 for four in 37.4 overs.
Pooran 58 (43b,6×4,1×6) and skipper Jason Holder 45 (34b,1×4,4×6) further added 105-runs for the fifth wicket. The tail could not contribute much and West Indies ended up scoring 311 for six in 50 overs. Dawlat Zadran (two for 73) impressed for Afghanistan.
Fighting reply by Afghanistan
Afghanistan gave a good fight by batting well and almost matched the West Indies and came closer to the target. After the loss of opener Gulbadin Naib (5) early (5 for one), Afghanistan were well served by Rahmat Shah 62 (78b,10×4) and wicket-keeper batsman Ikram Ali Khil 86 (93b,8×4) who added 133-runs for the second wicket. This partnership rekindled the hopes of the Afghanistan team.
Rahmat Shah departed but a 51-run third wicket partnership between Ikram and Najibullah 31 (38b,1×4,1×6) further added value to the run chase. After the fall of Najibullah at 194 for four in 35.5 overs, Afghanistan lost Nabi (2), Shinwari (6), Rashid Khan (9) and Dawlat Zardan (1) quickly. Asghar Afgan (40,32b,4×4,1×6) and Sayed Shirzad (25, 17b,2×4,2×6) used the long handle with purpose but could not take Afghanistan home.
Afghanistan ended up scoring 288 in 50 overs and fell short of the target by 23-runs.
Shai Hope was chosen as the Player of the Match. Both the teams West Indies and Afghanistan bowed out of this edition of the World Cup.
West Indies: 311 for six in 50 overs (E. Lewis 58, Shai Hope 77, Hetmyer 39, Pooran 58, Holder 45, Dawlat Zardan two for 73) bt Afghanistan 288 in 50 overs (Rahmat Shah 62, Ikram Ali Khil 86, Najibullah 31, Asghar Afgan 40, Shirzad 25, Carlos Brathwaite four for 63, Kemar Roach three for 37). Player of the Match: Shai Hope.