The earlier of two Cricket World Cup matches taking place on Saturday sees India go off as overwhelming favourites to beat Afghanistan at the Rose Bowl, Southampton.
India made it 4 wins alongside 1 no result when they beat Pakistan by 89 runs (DLS) in Manchester last weekend. Batting first India posted 336/5 with Rohit Sharma top scoring with 140, opening partner Lokesh Rahul made 57 and Virat Kohli scored 77. Although a century stand for the second Pakistan wicket looked threatening India got on top with Vijay Shankar, Kuldeep Yadav and Hardik Pandya all taking 2 wickets. Although rain also had a say more than once India were well in front on DLS.
Earlier results saw India beat South Africa by 6 wickets, Australia by 36 runs and their scheduled meeting with New Zealand was completely washed out. India’s win over Pakistan saw them replace England as favourites at 19/10 to win the tournament.
Rohit Sharma is leading run scorer for India with 319, Virat Kohli has 317 and Shikhar Dhawan (injured and out of the tournament) made 125. With the ball Chahal has taken 6 wickets whilst Kumar and Bumrah have 5.
This was how India lined up against Pakistan.
Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (capt), Vijay Shankar, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah
Afghanistan were thumped by England in Manchester on Tuesday, going down by 150 runs. They pegged England to some degree early in the innings but when the host nation cut loose it was record breaking one-way traffic. Eoin Morgan smashed 17 of his sides 25 maximums and England posted 397/6. Rashid Khan, the big hope for Afghanistan with the ball, was carted for 110 runs in his 9 overs. Afghanistan’s reply closed on 247/8 with Hashmatullah Shahidi top scoring with 76.
Earlier results saw Afghanistan lose to Australia by 7 wickets, Sri Lanka by 34 runs (DLS), New Zealand by 7 wickets and South Africa by 9 wickets (DLS) and they are still waiting for their first point of the tournament.
Hashmatullah Shahidi s leading run scorer for Afghanistan with 165, Najibullah Zadran has 113 and Gulbadin Naib has made 100. With the ball Gulbadin Naib and Dawlat Zadran both have 5 wickets
This was how Afghanistan lined up against England
Rahmat Shah, Noor Ali Zadran, Najibullah Zadran, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Asghar Afghan, Mohammad Nabi, Ikram Ali Khil (wk), Gulbadin Naib (capt), Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Dawlat Zadran
Head to Head
The teams have met just twice with India winning the first match staged in Dhaka by 8 wickets back in March 2014.
In the Asia Cup in Dubai in September 2018 the scores were tied with both sides making 252 runs
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With Shikhar Dhawan out of the tournament Lokesh Rahul made a good start as his replacement at the top of the Indian batting line up against Pakistan last weekend. Although Rohit Sharma is grabbing the headlines a chance is taken on Rahul to outshine Rohit and even Kohli and if he does top score for India he could well walk off with the Man of the Match award.
Man Of The Match, KL Rahul at 8/1