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Shahzad and spinners help Afghanistan go 1-0 up

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Ireland v Afghanistan, 2nd ODI, Belfast

Afghanistan 250 (Shahzad 66, Najibullah Zadran 59, O'Brien 4-45, McCarthy 4-59) beat Ireland 211 (Joyce 62, Rashid Khan 3-28, Nabi 3-45) by 39 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Half-centuries from Mohammad Shahzad and Najibullah Zadran set the base for Afghanistan's 39-run win in the second ODI against Ireland in Belfast on Tuesday.

Afghanistan, who were bowled out for 250 after being sent in to bat, overcame Ireland's solid start to the chase - openers William Porterfield and Ed Joyce added 71 - to spin the hosts out. Rashid Khan, the legspinner, finished with 3 for 28, while offspinner Mohammad Nabi claimed 3 for 45 as Ireland were bowled out for 211 in 48.2 overs. That meant Afghanistan took a 1-0 lead in the five-match series which started with a washout.

As many as seven Afghanistan batsmen got into double digits but most could not kick on. Shahzad, the opener, top scored with 66. The visitors, who were cruising at 76 without loss, slipped to 125 for 4, before being rescued by 70-run stand between Najibullah Zadran and Samiullah Shenwari. Zadran smashed six fours and two sixes in his 61-ball knock, before Barry McCarthy, the medium pacer, polished off the tail to finish with 4 for 59 - his best figures so far in his fledgling ODI career. Kevin O'Brien also chipped in with four wickets.

Ireland were on course as Joyce brought up a half-century. Then, medium pacer Mirwais Ashraf's two wickets in the space of four deliveries in the 27th over stalled the chase. O'Brien kept Ireland in the game with a 27-ball 35, but the escalating asking rate meant escalated pressure too, which the hosts could not withstand. O'Brien was fifth man out, before Ireland's last five wickets fell for 22.

The third ODI will also be played at the same venue on Thursday.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.



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