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Stanikzai, Rashid put Afghanistan in driver's seat

UAE v Afg, ICC I Cup, Day 2 report

Skipper's century carries visitor to 510 for 9 declared, leg-spinner reduces UAE to 100 for 5.

Asghar Stanikzai and Rashid Khan played lead roles as Afghanistan took command of its ICC Intercontinental Cup game against the United Arab Emirates in Abu Dhabi on Thursday (November 30).

At stumps on the second day of the four-day contest, the host nation had slumped to 100 for 5 in reply to Afghanistan’s 510 for 9 declared. Rashid, the leg-spinner, did the bulk of the damage on his way to figures of 3 for 24 after Stankizai, the skipper, had become Afghanistan’s third centurion of the game.

Overnight 321 for 3 on the back of hundreds from Ihsanullah and Rahmat Shah, Afghanistan continued to pile on the runs despite losing Nasir Jamal to the fourth delivery of the morning. With Mohammad Nabi (29) for support, Stanikzai eased to his fifth first-class century during a stand of 63 for the fifth wicket. After he fell to Ahmed Raza, the left-arm spinner, for a 163-ball 114 that contained 12 fours and a six, Afsar Zazai and Rashid swelled the tally by adding 72 for the seventh.

Rashid smashed seven fours in his 42-ball 40, and Stanikzai applied the declaration when Zazai brought up his half-century, in 108 deliveries with five fours.

Raza was the UAE’s most successful bowler, with 5 for 148 from 53 tireless overs. Mohammad Naveed, the paceman, finished with 3 for 112.

The UAE struggled to find any rhythm to its reply once Dawlat Zadran and Yamin Ahmadzai, the new-ball bowlers, dismissed Rohan Mustafa and Chirag Suri, the openers, in the space of seven deliveries. Rashid then took over, trapping Rameez Shahzad and Muhammad Usman in front and having Adnan Mufti caught.

Shaiman Anwar, the No. 3, was holding fort with an uncharacteristically patient 29 (88 balls), with an equally stoic Saqlain Haider (3 off 39) for company when stumps were drawn.

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