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  5. Afghanistan seal historic maiden semi-final berth after beating Bangladesh in thriller; Australia knocked out

Afghanistan seal historic maiden semi-final berth after beating Bangladesh in thriller; Australia knocked out

Afghanistan prevailed in a low-scoring thriller against Bangladesh in St Vincent to knock out Australia in the ongoing ICC Men's T20 World Cup and qualified for their maiden semi-finals. Bangladesh failed to chase down 114 runs in 19 overs (DLS adjusted) as they kept losing wickets regularly.

Edited By: Anshul Gupta @oyegupta_ New Delhi Updated on: June 25, 2024 11:30 IST
Afghanistan have beaten Bangladesh by 8 runs on DLS method
Image Source : AP Afghanistan have beaten Bangladesh by 8 runs on DLS method and qualified for the semi-finals

Afghanistan sealed their maiden semi-final berth in the ICC Men's T20 World Cup as they beat Bangladesh by eight runs on the DLS method in a low-scoring thriller at Arnos Vale Ground in St Vincent on Monday, June 24 (local time). Afghanistan's win meant that Australia were knocked out for the second consecutive time in the T20 World Cup since their championship run in 2021. Afghanistan who advanced to Super 8 with three wins in four matches in Group C, beat New Zealand and Australia on their way to a historic semis qualification in the T20 World Cup.

Afghanistan would have felt that the semi-final spot was theirs last time around in the ODI World Cup in 2023 but they missed out on it because of a madman, Glenn Maxwell. However, when the push came to shove, Afghanistan made sure that they beat Australia first and prevailed in a humdinger against the Bangla Tigers who failed to win a single match in the Super 8s.

Before the match, Australia, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, all three had a chance to go through. Afghanistan just needed to win while Australia depended on Bangladesh, who had to chase down 116 runs in 12.1 overs. To their credit, Bangladesh bowled superbly to restrict Afghanistan to just 115. The Afghans with a little cameo from Rashid Khan of 19* off 10 did get a little away there but Bangladesh would have fancied their chances to get through.

Taskin Ahmed, Rishad Hossain and Mustafizur Rahman led Bangladesh's combined bowling effort to not let Afghanistan batters let loose. The equation was clear for Bangladesh, they had to chase down 116 in 73 deliveries. The constant stop-start with rain forcing several delays didn't help.

Litton Das got off the blocks quickly but Bangladesh lost three wickets quite cheaply as Naveen ul Haq dismissed both the captain Najmul Hossain Shanto and Shakib Al Hasan in consecutive deliveries. Soumya Sarkar and Towhid Hridoy played their part with cameos but regular wickets were not helping the Bangladesh side, who was still seeking its first win in the Super 8.

Litton Das held one end up and scored his fifty. The third rain delay reduced the match to 19 overs per side and two runs were taken off the target. With Litton set and the target under 30, Bangladesh looked comfortable to chase it down with the required run rate not being an issue.

However, since Litton Das couldn't hound the strike, Afghanistan had the opportunity to bowl to the bowlers and get them out and that's what happened. Gulbadin Naib recovered from cramp to get back on the field and dismiss Tanzim Hasan Sakib before Naveen, who had the number of the left-handers on Monday night, sent back Taskin and Mustafizur in consecutive deliveries as Afghanistan players and support staff went off.

Afghanistan will take on South Africa in Tarouba, Trinidad in the first semi-final on Wednesday, June 26 (local time) while India take on England in their semi-final in Guyana on Thursday (June 27) morning.

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