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Nabi all praise for smashing Shahzad

“We did a lot of basics wrong, the fielding was very poor again today, which is inexcusable,” says Charlie Burke, Hong Kong’s coach

Nabi all praise for smashing Shahzad - Cricket News
Mohammad Nabi was all praise for Mohammad Shahzad after the batsman scored 68 against Hong Kong.
Charlie Burke, coach of the Hong Kong team, could not hide his disappointment after his team lost its second game on the trot and failed to give itself a chance of making it to the next round of matches in the ICC World Twenty20 2014. While Hong Kong showed considerable improvement since its drubbing at the hands of Nepal, it was outgunned by Afghanistan on Tuesday (March 18).
 
“Yeah, it was a better performance, but we still did a lot of basics wrong, the fielding was very poor again today, which is inexcusable,” said Burke. “We pride ourselves on our fielding and we fielded really well in all the pre-matches and again we dropped some simple catches today.”
 
But, it was not only the fielding that let Hong Kong down. After a good start when it was batting, it faded away in the crucial end overs. “We didn’t finish the innings well, I thought we were maybe 20 runs short of a really good total,” said Burke. “I think the first ten overs we batted really well but we just didn’t have a set batsman in at the end, which is always crucial. When you’re relying on nine and ten to get runs for you at the end it’s always tough.”
 
Hong Kong lost Irfan Ahmed off the first ball once more, and this certainly put paid to any grand plans it may have hatched ahead of the game. “Irfan’s batting really well in the nets and he’s probably got two good balls for his dismissals,” said Burke. “Someone like Irfan, who’s such a big player for us particularly at the top of the order to get out first ball both innings is crucial and really sets you back.”
 
Hong Kong created chances, but twice put down offerings from Mohammad Shahzad, who then made the opposition pay. “When you drop someone who goes on and makes a good score it really hurts you, and they chased really well,” said Burke. “I thought Afghanistan remained calm the whole way through and they showed how good a side they are ... to miss that run out that we should have easily got and two dropped catches, really hurts you.”
 
Hong Kong has one game left to play, against Bangladesh, and though it was out of the running, Burke believed that there was plenty to play for. “It’s crucial, I think, for Hong Kong, showing everyone back home how good a side we are, the people don’t get to watch the team very often, so it’s important for us to show them as well as potential sponsors,” said Burke. “Also I think what’s really important is that associate cricket shows the world how good associate countries can be, so I suppose that’s been a little disappointing that we probably haven’t held up our end of the bargain on that side of things.”
 
Having got the win under the belt, Mohammad Nabi, Afghanistan’s captain, was all smiles. He believed that restricting Hong Kong to 153 was crucial. “On this pitch, 170-175 would have been a good score, because the ball comes onto the bat nicely. Our plan was to keep wickets in hand because we believed 154 was gettable,” said Nabi, who was all praise for Shahzad. “The main role of Shahzad is to play for the first six, seven, eight overs. He’s that kind of batsman, a stroke player and once he gets in, he will get a score on the board, like he did today.”

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