World Cup 2023: Afghanistan on Sunday pulled the biggest miracle of their cricketing history as they stunned the reigning World Champions England in a thrilling encounter at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi. The Afghan side defeated the 2019 champions to register their first-ever win over England in any format of International cricket.
Afghanistan made a competitive total of 284 in their first innings as Rahmanullah Gurbaz top-scored with an 80-run knock. The bowling party complemented well to keep the English giants at bay in a joy-filled defence of their total. Mujeeb Ur Rahman grabbed three wickets in his 10 overs to help the team cross the finishing line. Rashid Khan took the final wicket as he cleaned up Mark Wood to send the Afghan fans in euphoria. The Afghans defeated England by a big margin of 69 runs.
Afghanistan’s second-ever WC win
This is Afghanistan’s second-ever in the ODI World Cup history. They played 17 matches in the tournament before this and registered their only win against Scotland in 2015. They were on a 14-match losing streak at the tournament and came close on many times for more victories but that finishing line eluded the Asian side.
Gurbaz, Mujeeb star in big win
Afghan batter Rahmanullah Gurbaz and spin star Mujeeb Ur Rahman made life tough for England as the former got Afghanistan to a rocketing start. The opener pair of Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran registered a record opening stand for their team as they scored a quickfire 114 in 16.4 overs. However, Afghanistan gave away their advantage in the middle order and went 6 down for 190. However, Ikram Alikhil along with Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman looked to get Afghanistan over 275.
Coming to the chase, England were hit with a big blow when they lost Jonny Bairstow in the second over. Dawid Malan tried clawing England back but they kept losing more wickets. Harry Brook held one end up and kept the three lions into the hunt. His 61-ball 66-run outing kept the defending champions’ hopes alive but once he went in the 34th over, a loss became inevitable.