Afghanistan Thrash Hosts South Africa in Under-19 World Cup Opener

Cricketnext Staff

Legspinner Shafiqullah Ghafari picked up six wickets as Afghanistan thrashed hosts South Africa by seven wickets in the first match of the ICC Under-19 World Cup at Diamond Oval, Kimberley.

Ghafari had stunning figures of 6 for 15 from 9.1 overs as Afghanistan bowled South Africa out for just 129 in 29.1 overs. Afghanistan then chased it down in 30 overs with Imran Mir hitting 57 off 48 and Ibrahim Zadran scoring 52 off 72.

Only three South Africa batsmen got to double-digit scores, with captain Bryce Parson's 40 being the highest score.

South Africa opted to bat first but lost their openers with just seven on board, pacer Fazal Haq bagging both wickets. A 55-run stand for the third wicket between Parson and Luke Beaufort (25) steadied the innings before Noor Ahmed removed the former.

Ghafari then ran through the batting, spinning a web around South Africa. There were a total of three ducks in the innings, and South Africa crossed 100 only

thanks to Gerald Coetzee's 23-ball 38 from No. 9.

Afghanistan captain Farhan Zakhil fell for 11 but Zadran and Mir shared an 80-run stand for the second wicket to put them on course for a win. Both fell towards the end but Afghanistan won easily.