Zee Media Bureau/Jayanta Oinam & Chaitan Papnai
Over 18 || Score 154/3
Riding on the whirlwind knocks by Mohammad Shahzad and Shafiqullah, Afghanistan have successfully chased the target of 154 runs set by Hong Hong, with 12 balls to spare. Afghanistan have sealed the match quite comfortably with seven wickets. And with that, Afghanistan have won their first match of the tournament.
Mohammad Shahzad c Irfan Ahmed b Haseeb Amjad 68 (69m )
Over 15 || Score 110/2
Mohammad Shahzad is on a roll here. He has luck on his side as he has been dropped two times in this innings. In the 14th over Afghanistan have crossed the mark of 100 runs. In the last three overs they have scored 42 runs without losing a wicket. Now Afghanistan need 44 runs in last 30 balls.
Over 12 || Score 68/1
After scoring bunch of boundaries, Mohammad Shahzad is now dealing in sixes. He is literally thrashing the Hong Kong bowlers all over the park. In the 12th over he completed his fifty in 41 balls, lacked with five boundaries and two sixes. But in between Afghanistan lost their second wicket in the form of Asghar Stanikzai in the 11th over. Now Afghanistan required 72 runs in 48 balls to seal the match and they have eight wickets in hand.
Asghar Stanikzai c Babar Hayat b Aizaz Khan 13 (21b)
Over 6 || Score 38/1
Mohammad Shahzad has started opening up and scoring boundaries at will. He has reached to 25 in mere 21 balls with the help of five boundaries. Afghanistan are getting the momentum and now their batsmen have to capitalise on that. Whereas, Hong Kong have to take few wickets to stop their opponents from scoring quickly.
Over 3 || Score 14/1
Afghanistan lost their first wicket in third over in the form of Najeeb Tarakai as Nadeen took a wonderful catch at deep mid-wicket. Asghar Stanikzai is the new man in after the fall of first Afghani wicket. Hong Kong are dominating the proceedings at the moment.
Najeeb Tarakai c Nadeem Ahmed b Tanwir Afzal 7 (6b)
Hong Kong Innings
Over 20 || Score 153/8
Hong Kong have set a competitive total in front of Afghanistan after they choose to bat first. Now if Afghanistan, who is known for batting collapse, have to win this match then they need to score runs quickly without losing much of their wickets. Whereas, on the other hand, Hong Kong batsmen have done their job quite well now it's time for their bowlers to defend the total.
Tanwir Afzal c Gulbadin Naib b Shapoor Zadran 11 (6b )
Munir Dar run out 3 (6b)
Nizakat Khan c Mohammad Nabi b Hamza Hotak 9 (4b )
Over 17 || Score 120/5
In last three overs Hong Kong have lost two more wickets. First Babar was sent back to the pavilion by Mohammad Nabi and then in the next over MS Chapman's cameo of 38 runs also came to an end as Dawlat Zadran's ball crashed into his stumps. From here on Hong Kong will be eyeing to set a total of somewhere around 150 runs.
MS Chapman b Dawlat Zadran 38 (43b)
Babar Hayat c Asghar Stanikzai b Mohammad Nabi 5 (3b)
Over 13.3 || Score 102/3
Waqas Barkat's run-a-ball innings comes to an end going for innovation. His lofted shot failed to travel and Dawlat Zadran completed the sending off rite with a simple catch at short fine-leg.
Waqas Barkat c Dawlat Zadran b Mohammad Nabi 32 (32b)
Over 10 || Score 72/2
A 30-run partnership between Waqas Barkat and Mark Chapman have steadied the Hong Kong innings after the fall of their skipper. With wickets in hand, they can always accelerate the run-rate later part of the innings.
For Afghanistan, slow left-arm bowler Hamza Hotak has been the best bowlers so far with a wicket from his two overs, conceding only 12 runs.
Over 4.4 || Score 42/2
Hong Kong skipper departs after playing an important innings for the team. In his 20-ball innings, Atkinson hit five fours and one six to give Hong Kong's a flying start.
Jamie Atkinson lbw b Hamza Hotak 31 (20b)
Over 0.1 || Score 0/1
First ball, first wicket...
Shapoor Zadran removes Irfan Ahmed, bowled with a beautiful delivery. The Hong Kong opener played a horrible shot and ball castled the stumps.
Irfan Ahmed b Shapoor Zadran 0 (1b)
Here are the teams:
Afghanistan: Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Najeeb Tarakai, Asghar Stanikzai, Shafiqullah, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi (capt.), Samiullah Shenwari, Gulbadin Naib, Hamza Hotak, Dawlat Zadran, Shapoor Zadran
Hong Kong: Waqas Barkat, Irfan Ahmed, Jamie Atkinson (capt./wk), Mark Chapman, Babar Hayat, Nizakat Khan, Munir Dar, Tanwir Afzal, Aizaz Khan, Haseeb Amjad, Nadeem Ahmed
Toss: Hong Kong skipper, Jamie Atkinson won the toss and elected to bat first.
Chittagong: Group A is still wide open, so to say, mathematically. However, after losing their respective opening matches, both Afghanistan and Hong Kong will find it very, very tough to win the group, which also has tournament hosts Bangladesh and Nepal.
So, when these two Associate teams meet in a must win game to keep their faintest of hopes alive, it will be a do-or-die encounter. Still fighting to have a cricketing identity, these two teams have plenty of talented players. But, the collective effort of a team has always been the missing link.
Afghanistan have played 23 T20 matches so far with some wins over fellow Associate teams. For Hong Kong, this will be their second match in the shortest format of the game. A win today would be a historic occasion for either side, because it will their first in a world cup match.