Zimbabwe managed to contain Afghanistan in the third ODI defending their score by a narrow 3-run win. They set a low target of 130 for the team and it was almost a cakewalk for the visitors who needed only 16 runs off 24 overs. The team had five wickets in hand, but Zimbabwe notched a fantastic victory taking down the middle and the lower order in only 14 runs saving the 3-run victory. It was seamer Chris Mpofu who spearhead the attack to expose the lower balling line up of the team. Afghanistan seemed too confident, which might have been the real trouble maker for the team.
Even Mpofu was plundered by Mohammad Nabi at his first ball of 27th over for a six. There were no signs of Zimbabwe’s recovery until Sanuillah Shenwari was removed on the third ball, caught by Peter Moor behind the stumps. In the next ball Najibullah Zadran was dismissed in a similar fashion. When the wickets were down, the team required only 9 runs to win.
The equation reduced to six runs off 23 massive overs and three wickets in hand. It was the turning point of the match. Nabi was on strike with Rashid Khan while Zimbabwe set spinner Sean Williams on attack. It was a maiden over from the bowler and Nabi was bowled. The next over was from Mpofu where Khan was removed with no runs added to the chase.
The chase now hanged on the 10 wicket Amir Hamza and Fareed Ahmad, the last wicket. Hamza tried out a strike in the over from Williams but lost himself on the hands of Richard Ngarava. Thus, Zimbabwe kept the series alive with a marvelous win, stealing it away from Afghanistan’s plate. In the previous inning, the team was knocked out by the visitor bowlers exhausting the batting line-up in just 32.4 overs. However, Tarisai Musakanda scored a half century tallying 60 off 74 balls.
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