As the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 kicks off, Afghanistan’s openers have set the stage with a strong start, reaching 47 without loss. The momentum was slightly disrupted when Ibrahim Zadran, after scoring 22 runs, was caught off Shakib Al Hasan’s bowling due to a mis-timed sweep into the deep.
First World Cup Match for Bangladesh and Afghanistan
Both Bangladesh and Afghanistan are making their debut in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023. The match at HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala is crucial for both teams as they aim for a victory that could pave their way to a first-ever semi-final berth.
Shakib Al Hasan Leads Bangladesh Despite Doubts
Despite doubts about his participation due to his absence in the warm-up matches in India, Shakib Al Hasan was chosen to captain Bangladesh. The team aims to improve their record, having only advanced to the knockout stages once before in a Cricket World Cup. Shakib, who is entering his fifth Cricket World Cup since his debut in 2009, decided to send Afghanistan in to bat first, considering the venue’s history of teams successfully chasing down their targets in ODIs.
Afghanistan’s Strategy for a Strong Total
Following the strong start by Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran, Afghanistan’s captain, Hashmatullah Shahidi, is hopeful of building a robust total in the first innings. The team plans to use their spin triple-threat, capable of attacking with the new ball and defending a lead in the final stages.
Afghanistan’s Top-10 Bowlers
Afghanistan boasts three bowlers in the top-10 of the MRF Tyres ICC ODI Bowling Rankings. Mujeeb Ur Rahman leads the pack at third place, followed by the unpredictable Rashid Khan at fourth. Mohammad Nabi, who also contributes significantly with the bat, completes the top 10 bowlers.
Shakib Al Hasan: Top ODI All-Rounder
Shakib Al Hasan, who holds the top spot among ODI all-rounders in the latest rankings, will play a crucial role in trying to limit Afghanistan’s run flow during the middle overs.
Litton Das, Tanzid Hasan, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Shakib Al Hasan (c), Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Towhid Hridoy, Mahmudullah, Taskin Ahmed, Shoriful Islam, Mustafizur Rahman
Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi (c), Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Azmatullah Omarzai, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Naveen-ul-Haq, Fazalhaq Farooqi