Afghanistan have remarkably made a comeback in the three-match T20I series against Windies after winning the second T20I of the series on Saturday (16th November) night at Lucknow. Karim Janat delivered brilliant all-round performances that guided Afghanistan to win that low-scoring game.
Trailing this series by 1-0, Afghanistan captain Rashid Khan decided to bat first after winning the toss. The openers Hazratullah Zazai and wicketkeeper-batsman Rahmanullah Gurbaz provided a superb start with the 42 runs partnership in 4.2 overs.
However, the Afghan batsmen failed to score big runs as none of their batsmen reached the 30-run mark. The opener Zazai and the hero of this match Karim Janat both scored 26 runs. While Afghanistan were losing their wickets at regular intervals, the late batsmen Najibullah Zadran (20*) and Gulbadin Naib (24) scored some crucial runs. Finally, Afghanistan managed to score 147/7 in 20 overs.
The Windies right-arm pacer Kesrick Williams (3/23) bagged three wickets in that innings. Also, Jason Holder (2/23) and Keemo Paul (2/28) took two wickets each.
Karim Janat had the bowling figures of 4-0-11-5
In reply, Windies batsmen never felt comfortable to chase that target as they had no proper partnership. They failed to stop the pacer Karim Janat’s destruction as apart from the wicketkeeper-batsman Denesh Ramdin, all other Windies batsmen failed to reach the 20-run mark. Also, Ramdin couldn’t provide strong guidance as he remained not out on 24 runs off 27 balls. Afghanistan restricted the Caribbean side to just 106/8 (20 overs) and they won by 41 runs.
Karim Janat was furious on that night. The right-arm pacer took at least one wicket in every over in that second innings and finished with the bowling figures of 4-0-11-5. Karim Janat’s these bowling figures were the second-best T20I bowling figures in Afghanistan cricket history. Only the leg-spinner Rashid Khan (2-1-3-5 against Ireland on 10th March 2017) once provided the better T20I bowling figures than Janat’s latest bowling performance.
On last Thursday (14th November) night, Windies won the first T20I of this series by 30 runs. But after winning the second T20I, Afghanistan have levelled this series by 1-1 with one match to go. On Sunday (17th November), they will play the third and final T20I of this series which will be a series decider.