Shah ton seals series for Afghanistan
Afghanistan have taken the three-match series 2-0 with a game to following a seven-wicket victory over Ireland in the second ODI in Abu Dhabi.
Rahmat Shah registered his fifth ODI ton in the process as Afghanistan chased down 260 with 28 balls remaining. The right-hander made 103* runs from 109 deliveries, striking 10 fours and 2 sixes.
Shah and Hashmatullah Shahidi shared a 184-run stand for the third-wicket, Afghanistan’s highest third-wicket partnership in ODIs. Shahidi missed out on a maiden ton, scoring 82 off 100.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz, who made a debut hundred on Thursday, set the tone with quickfire 26-ball 31. Skipper Asghar Afghan hit unbeaten 21* off 13 to finish off the game.
Winning the toss, Ireland made 259/9. Opener Paul Stirling and all-rounder Curtis Campher added 106 runs for the fourth-wicket to recover early blows. Campher hit 52-ball 47 while Stirling hit his third hundred in five innings.
Stirling slammed 4 sixes and 12 fours in his knock of 128 runs off 132 balls. He also levelled with Will Porterfield in Irish record to score most ODI centuries (11).
The lower order did not provide support as Naveen-ul-Haq, who claimed career-best 4/42, slowed the run flow. Mujeeb Ur Rahman took 3 for 46.
Afghanistan now have 20 points in the World Cup Super League. They are currently placed at number five.
The third ODI will be played on January 26.
Ireland 259/9 in 50 overs (Stirling 128, Campher 47; Naveen 4/42, Mujeeb 3/46)
Afghanistan 260/3 in 45.2 overs (Shah 103*, Shahidi 82, Gurbaz 31; Campher 1/28)
Afghanistan won by 7 wickets
Player of the Match: Rahmat Shah