Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan smashed an entertaining 43 and took three wickets as his side demolished Zimbabwe by 146 runs in the fifth ODI in Sharjah.
As a result of their convincing win, Afghanistan won the series 4-1.
Choosing to bat first, Afghanistan made a slow start to their innings before opener Mohammad Shahzad was brilliantly caught by Malcolm Waller off the bowling of Blessing Muzarabani for two runs.
Javed Ahmadi and Rahmat Shah made up for the loss of Shahzad with a 129-run partnership before Rahmat was dismissed by Sikandar Raza for 59, which came off 75 balls and included five boundaries.
Ahmadi went on to score 76 off 87 deliveries, which included six boundaries and two sixes, before he was run out by Tendai Chisoro.
Afghanistan began to lose wickets in a hurry after Ahmadi’s dismissal, but Rashid and Sharafuddin Ashraf halted Zimbabwe’s charge with a 51-run partnership before Ashraf was sent packing by Tendai Chatara for 21.
Rashid proceeded to make 43 off 29 balls, which included three boundaries and three sixes, as Afghanistan finished on 241/9 off their 50 overs.
Chatara, Muzarabani and Raza picked up two wickets apiece, while Chisoro and Zimbabwe captain Graeme Cremer chipped in with one wicket each.
Chasing 242 to win, Zimbabwe lost openers Hamilton Masakadza and Tarisai Musakanda early on.
However, Brendan Taylor and Craig Ervine steadied things with a 46-run partnership before Taylor was given out lbw off the bowling of Ashraf for 27.
Once Taylor was gone, Zimbabwe imploded as they went from 72/3 to being skittled out for 95. Ervine ended up being the highest scorer with 34 runs.
Rashid was the most successful bowler with three wickets, while Ashraf and Mohammad Nabi took two wickets apiece. As for Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Shapoor Zadran, they claimed one wicket each.
Ashraf was named Man of the Match, while Rashid was received the Man of the Series award.