Australia's David Warner plays a shot. Photograph: AFP
Match 4 of Cricket World Cup is between Afghanistan and Australia
Jun 01, 2019, 11:50 PM
Australia beat Afghanistan by 7 wickets
Defending champions Australia defeated Afghanistan by seven wickets in their campaign opener of Cricket World Cup 2019 on Saturday at Bristol’s County Ground.
Openers Aaron Finch and David Warner completed their half-centuries as Australia chased down the target of the 208-run target in 34.5 overs.
Finch scored a total of 66 runs off 49 balls and his innings included 6 fours and 4 sixes before losing his wicket to Gulbadin Naib.
Usman Khawaja, in at number three, scored 15 runs and lost his wicket to Afghan's spin sensation Rashid Khan.
Warner, who returned after a year-long ban, played a brilliant innings and scored an unbeaten 89 runs.
Steve Smith, who is also coming after serving a one-year ban, scored 18 runs.
Glenn Maxwell scored the winning runs.
Earlier, Australia's Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa took three wickets each as Afghanistan were bowled out for 207 in 39 overs.
Paceman Cummins finished with figures of 3-40 and leg spinner Zampa took 3-60 as the holders kept the brakes on their inexperienced but flamboyant opponents.
Afghanistan lost both of their openers in the first two overs but rallied with a half century from captain Najibullah Zadran and an aggressive cameo from Rashid Khan to creep over the 200-run mark.
Rahmat Shah steadied the innings with a 43-run knock after coming in at No. 3, but it was Najibullah and Gulbadin Naib who gave the Afghanis hope of a competitive total with a swashbuckllng 83-run sixth-wicket partnership off only 75 balls.
Najibullah, who won the toss and elected to bat, scored 51 off 49 balls while Gulbadin hit 31 off 33.
Rashid Khan also flashed his bat but his knock of 27 runs off 11 balls ended when Zampa trapped him leg before wickets.
Jun 01, 2019, 11:48 PM
Steve Smith out!
He scored 18 runs off 27 balls.
All-rounder Glenn Maxwell is the next batsman.
Jun 01, 2019, 11:42 PM
Australia are 199/2 after 33 overs.
Jun 01, 2019, 11:14 PM
Usman Khawaja out!
Rashid Khan to Khawaja, lbw out.
Khawaja scored 15 runs off 20 balls.
Next batsman is Steve Smith.
Jun 01, 2019, 11:11 PM
Warner completes his 18th international half-century.
What a comeback after one-year gap.
Jun 01, 2019, 11:04 PM
Chasing 208 to win, Australia are 142/1 after 22 overs.
Jun 01, 2019, 10:44 PM
Australia have crossed the 100-run mark, they are 103/1 after 18 overs.
Jun 01, 2019, 10:42 PM
Gulbadin Naib gets the first breakthrough as he took Aaron Finch's wicket.
Naib to Finch, catch out by Mujeeb Ur Rahman.
Finch scored 66 runs off 49 balls. His innings included 6 fours and 4 sixes.
Next batsman is Usman Khawaja.
Khawaja is coming at number three. He's used to open with Finch in the absence of Warner.
Jun 01, 2019, 10:28 PM
Australia have capitalised on the their good start.
The opening pair has played a responsible innings so far.
After 13 overs, they are 69/0.
Jun 01, 2019, 09:55 PM
Australia are off to a stable start against Afghanistan.
After 5 overs, the score is 35/0.
Jun 01, 2019, 09:38 PM
David Warner, Aaron Finch have started the 208-run chase against Afghanistan.
It's must be an emotional moment for Warner here as he is returning to international cricket after a year gap.
Mujeeb Ur Rahman will open AFG's bowling attack.
Jun 01, 2019, 09:13 PM
"Credit to Afghanistan, they played some fearless cricket," says Zampa during the break.
Jun 01, 2019, 09:11 PM
Last wicket gone...
Mujeeb Ur Rahman out after scoring 13 runs.
Afghanistan are all out for 207 in 38.2 overs.
The positive intent of Afghanistan team has helped them to put up a decent target.
Jun 01, 2019, 09:05 PM
After playing a few big shots, Rashid Khan out.
Zampa to Rashid, lbw out.
He scored 27 runs off 11 balls.
Next batsman is Hamid Hassan.
AFG are 207/9 after 38 overs.
Jun 01, 2019, 08:48 PM
Afghanistan lose another wicket, Zardan out after scoring 4 runs off 6 balls.
Cummin's beautiful bouncer confuses Zardan.
Mujeeb Ur Rahman is the next batsman.
Afghanistan are 166/7 after 35 overs.
Jun 01, 2019, 08:45 PM
Stoinis strikes again in the same over.
Najibullah departs after scoring 51 runs off 49 balls.
Next batsman is Dawlat Zadran.
Afghanistan are 162/7 after 34 overs.
Jun 01, 2019, 08:42 PM
Gulbadin Naib out!
Marcus Stoinis gets first wicket of this World Cup.
Naib cought out wicket-keeper Alex Carey.
Naib scored 31 off 33.
Next batsman is Rashid Khan.
Jun 01, 2019, 08:39 PM
Najibullah complete his half-century.
His 50 came off 46 balls.
Jun 01, 2019, 08:02 PM
Afghanistan cross 100-run mark.
After 27 overs, the score is 107/5.
Jun 01, 2019, 08:00 PM
Thanks to a brilliant fielding by Steve Smith.
Now, Nabi returns to the pavilion.
Nabi scored 7 off 22 balls.
Next batsman is Najibullah Zadran.
After 21 overs, AFG are 77/5.
Jun 01, 2019, 07:36 PM
Afghanistan lose another wicket!
Rahmat Shah out for 43.
Zampa takes his second wicket.
Jun 01, 2019, 07:09 PM
Hashmatullah Shahidi out
Spinner Zampa to Shahidi, and stumped by the wicket-keeper.
This is Zampa's first World Cup wicket.
Shahidi scored 18 runs off 34 balls.
Next batsman is Mohammad Nabi.
Jun 01, 2019, 06:25 PM
That's quite a start for the defending champions Australia.
Jun 01, 2019, 06:21 PM
Another wicket! Zazai out
Pacer Pat Cummins to Hazratullah Zazai, catch out by Alex Carey.
Zazai also out without scoring a single run.
Next batsman is Hashmatullah Shahidi.
Jun 01, 2019, 06:18 PM
It's just the first over and Afghanistan lose its first wicket.
Starc to Mohammad Shahzad, bowled.
Shahzad departs on duck.
Next batsman is Rahmat Shah.
Jun 01, 2019, 06:01 PM
What the captains are saying:
Gulbadin Naib: We're batting first and hoping to put a good score on the board. Yes, they (Australia) are a champion side and we need to start well against them.
Aaron Finch: I would have batted first as well, looks a good wicket to put runs on the board. Not that hard on top and hopefully, we can get some movement early on.
Jun 01, 2019, 05:34 PM
Afghanistan win the toss and opt to bat.
Australia: Aaron Finch(c), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey(w), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa
Afghanistan: Mohammad Shahzad(w), Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib(c), Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Hamid Hassan
Jun 01, 2019, 05:13 PM
Afghanistan: Gulbadin Naib (capt), Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Samiullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan, Mujeeb ur Rahman
Australia: Aaron Finch (c), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, Shaun Marsh, Alex Carey (wk), Marcus Stoinis, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, Pat Cummins, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Adam Zampa, Nathan Lyon
Jun 01, 2019, 05:04 PM
The day is expected to be a fine, dry and warm day, with lengthy spells of sunshine.
Dry conditions might bring spinners into play as it did in Afghanistan's win against Pakistan last week.
Jun 01, 2019, 05:04 PM
Afghanistan are very new when it comes to international cricket. They have played two ODI games against Australia and lost both.
Last time at the World Cup Perth, 2015: Australia won by 275 runs.
Jun 01, 2019, 05:03 PM
Stats and Facts:
At County Ground, West Indies amassed 421 against New Zealand here in their final warm-up game.
Jun 01, 2019, 05:02 PM
Steve Smith and David Warner will seek redemption on the biggest stage as they re-launch their one-day international careers for Australia at the World Cup.
The star batsmen were both banned for a year for their roles in a ball-tampering scandal but they have found form on their return to the international set-up.
Warner was the top run scorer in the recent Indian Premier League while Smith struck a hundred in a warm-up victory against England last weekend.
The defending champions have endured a tumultuous past year but the Aaron Finch-led side are peaking at the right time and are considered one of the favourites in the 50-over showpiece event.
After edging out hosts India 3-2 in a five-match ODI series in March, Australia welcomed back Smith and Warner with open arms.
The five-time champions will start as overwhelming favourites in Bristol against an Afghanistan side only playing their second 50-over World Cup.
Afghanistan's rise from associate-nation status to cricket's elite has been nothing short of a fairytale.
The minnows witnessed a captaincy change two months before the start of the World Cup, with little-known Gulbadin Naib named leader of the ODI side in place of Asghar Afghan, a move that did not go down well with some senior members of the team.
But the team have now settled to focus on their World Cup campaign.
Jun 01, 2019, 05:00 PM
Hello! And welcome to the Match 4 of the Cricket World Cup 2019 which is between Australia and Afghanistan at County Ground, Bristol.
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