The match between Zimbabwe and Afghanistan was a mere dead rubber as the finalists of the T20I tri-nation series have already been decided. However, it was veteran Hamilton Masakadza’s final match in national colours. The game went right down to the last over, but Zimbabwe made the game a memorable one for Masakadza, winning it by seven wickets with three balls to spare.
Afghans lose way after Rahmanullah blitz
The Afghans won the toss, elected to bat and then got off to a blistering start. Rahmanullah Gurbaz (61) and Hazratullah Zazai (31) stitched together a stand of 83 runs off 57 balls. Gurbaz notched his maiden fifty at the highest level and his knock was laced with four fours and as many sixes. Zazai also found the boundary a few times and he was the first wicket to fall to leggie Tinotenda Mutumbodzi.
Shafiqullah (16) then carried on the momentum before Chris Mpofu trapped him plumb in front. But after Sean Williams nipped out Gurbaz. the Afghans could only manage 39 runs in their last six overs. Najibullah Zadran and Mohammad Nabi, who played brilliantly versus Zimbabwe last time around, couldn’t make an impact. Mpofu picked four wickets and the Afghans finished with 155 for eight.
Masakadza steps on the gas to decimate Afghanistan
Hamilton Masakadza (71) and Brendan Taylor (19) threw the kitchen sink at everything and put on 40 in five overs. Mujeeb Ur Rahman got rid of the latter to strike first blood. Masakadza didn’t take his foot off the paddle and got to his fifty of 27 balls. He got the required rate down to a run-a-ball and put Zimbabwe on the driver’s seat. Dawlat Zadran got him with a well-disguised slower ball.
The Afghan players went and shook his hand, congratulating him on his last international appearance. Regis Chakabva (39) took Zimbabwe close, but threw his wicket away to Mujeeb with 17 runs required. It was then up to an out-of-form Williams to sheer his team home. He took on Mujeeb in the 18th over with a couple of boundaries and that helped Zimbabwe get across the line.
Here is how Twitter lauded Masakadza on a spectacular career
Superb Win By Zimbabwe And Zimbabwe Breaks Afghanistan Winning Streak Record. Top Knock by H Masakadza 👏!! #AFGvZIM #T20I
— Tanuj Kumar Singh (@TanujKumarSin17) September 20, 2019
Hamilton Masakadza powers Zimbabwe to their first-ever T20I victory over Afghanistan in his final international game 💪https://t.co/TgTHcBkxlf#AFGvZIM pic.twitter.com/6JqEWLuRJD
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) September 20, 2019
Zimbabwe beat Afghanistan by 7 wickets.
Their first win against Afghanistan after 8 consecutive defeats.
Ad its a Winning Farewell for Hamilton Masakadza who scored brilliant 71 off 42 balls#AFGvZIM #ZIMvAFG pic.twitter.com/nwO8YLwIzu
— Abhijeet ♞ (@TheYorkerBall) September 20, 2019
1️⃣6️⃣9️⃣⚬0️⃣4️⃣ Strike Rate
Zimbabwe skipper Hamilton Masakadza calls it a day in blistering fashion 🔥 #ThankYouHami #AFGvZIM 🇿🇼😍 pic.twitter.com/JADyPAiodE
— CricYes (@CricYess) September 20, 2019
Congratulations #Zimbabwe 🎉 #AFGvZIM pic.twitter.com/O98cE9GOGP
— সারাংশ (@dtcarifnet) September 20, 2019
So, yeah, both happened: a half-century (71 off 42 balls) for #HamiltonMasakadza and a win for Zimbabwe in Masakadza's final game in national colours.#AFGvZIM
— Annesha Ghosh (@ghosh_annesha) September 20, 2019
Historic win for Zimbabwe! 🇿🇼
Their first-ever victory over Afghanistan in T20Is! They also break Afghanistan's world-record winning streak of 12 matches. 🙌#AFGvZIM #AFGvsZIM
— Omkar Mankame (@Oam_16) September 20, 2019
Zimbabwe in T20Is vs Afghanistan:
🇱 🇱 🇱 🇱 🇱 🇱 🇱 🇱 … and 🇼!
Hamilton Masakadza goes out a winner, also delivering victory for Regis Chakabva on his 32nd birthday (it wasn't a happy 21st for Rashid Khan)
FOLLOW LIVE: 👉 https://t.co/jeToGh5ArB 👈 #AFGvZIM #ZIMvAFG pic.twitter.com/NMJifyqPUn
— 🏏FlashScore Cricket Commentators🏏 (@FlashCric) September 20, 2019
Zimbabwe WIN their 1st game of the tri-series by 7 wickets! What a lovely way to say goodbye to one of their legends, who's served them well for 18 years. Goodbye Masakadza! #AFGvZIM
— ThePoppingCrease (@PoppingCreaseSA) September 20, 2019
VICTORY. WHAT AN END FOR MASKADZA!#AFGvZIM #ZIMvAFG
— Unusual Cricket (@unusualCricket) September 20, 2019
Zimbabwe win Congress Zimbabwe team and nice farewell to Hamilton mazakza #AFGvZIM #ZIMvAFG
— vinay kapoor (@vinayka59670035) September 20, 2019
A Guard of Honour 🙌 18 year long career comes to an end.
Captain Hamilton Masakadza playing his last International Game and scored 71 off 42 while https://t.co/pkoOkU4RoF winning
Couldn't have asked a better Farewell. #AFGvZIM #ZIMvAFG pic.twitter.com/waKO9U18GZ
— Abhijeet ♞ (@TheYorkerBall) September 20, 2019
Special farewell to Hamilton Masakadza. Excellent inning!
Thank you!! @HamiltonMasaka2 #AFGvZIM
— Kejree Cricket Expert 🏏 (@Kejree) September 20, 2019
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