AfghanAbdalyan, banking on a solid all-round performance, chased down the 147-run target to beat the England Lions by 5 wickets in the one-off three-day match in Abu Dhabi.
Earlier on Sunday, the England Lions opted to bat first and faced some formidable bowling from Afghanistan, who have done well to bundle them out for 137 runs in the first inning. Zia Akbar's exceptional performance led the way with figures of 4/61, supported by Zahir Khan (2/10), Sharafuddin Ashraf (2/16), and Nijat Masoud (1/25).
AfghanAbdalyan led by Ikram Alikhil’s (56) half-century and helpful contributions from Darwish Rasooli (45) posted 174 runs in the first inning and took a lead of 37 runs. AfghanAbdalyan followed up their impressive show with the ball and bat in their respective first innings with another excellent show with the ball as they bundled out the opposition for 186 runs to set themselves a 147-run target in the 4th inning.
Zia Ur Rahman Akbar shone once again and returned with figures of 6/65 in the second inning, including a hat-trick after claiming 4/61 in the first inning. Saleem Safi also made a significant contribution with 3/32 and helped dismiss the England Lions.
AfghanAbdalyan were reduced to 42/3 at the end of Day 2 but Darwish Rasooli (45) and Ikram Alikhil (22*) stepped up again for the team as they took them home by 5 wickets.
The one-off three-day match between the AfghanAbdalyan and the England Lions was arranged as part of the Afghanistan Cricket Board’s plans for providing more playing opportunities for the team which serves to prepare them comprehensively for future national call-ups.