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England vs Afghanistan as it happened: England get second win, go home on a high

Afghanistan believe they've still 'got a scare' left in them ahead of their World Cup finale against England in Sydney on Friday.

FP Sports March 13, 2015 16:54:34 IST
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England vs Afghanistan as it happened: England get second win, go home on a high

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Mar 13, 2015 - 17:03 (IST)

That's it from us for today. Join us again tomorrow for Ind vs Zim at 0630 IST.

Mar 13, 2015 - 17:01 (IST)

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:56 (IST)

"We learn a lot from the tourament, and we will try our best for the next tournament we hope" Afghanistan's Mohammad Nabi. 

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:46 (IST)

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:43 (IST)

And England have their second win of the tournament. They can go home on a high. They have beaten Afghanistan by 9 wickets. That is also the end of Afghanistan's World Cup but we hope the Afghans will be around in the next World Cup too. 

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:39 (IST)

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:23 (IST)

Rambo strikes. Eng 83-1. Alex Hales walking back, straight edge to the keeper. Hamid Hassan deserved that -- perfect length and the batsman was neither forward nor backward.

Hales c †Afsar Zazai b Hamid Hassan 37 (33)

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:08 (IST)

After 10 overs, Eng 59-0 and they are somehow even managing to make this boring. Only they could. Given the kind of cricket they are playing, it is probably a good thing that they aren't making it to the quarters.

Mar 13, 2015 - 16:03 (IST)

Mar 13, 2015 - 15:59 (IST)

Afghanistan believe they've still "got a scare" left in them ahead of their World Cup finale against England in Sydney on Friday.

Remarkably, both sides will go into the match with exactly the same number of points after enjoying a win apiece over Scotland, like Afghanistan a non-Test side.

While Afghanistan's one-wicket defeat of Scotland was the latest chapter in a remarkable rise that has taken them from the lowest rung of international cricket to the game's showpiece tournament in barely seven years, for England victory over their neighbours couldn't salvage another wretched World Cup.

England vs Afghanistan as it happened England get second win go home on a high

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Australia (111 runs), New Zealand (eight wickets) and Sri Lanka (nine wickets) all inflicted thumping Pool A defeats upon Eoin Morgan's team, while Monday saw Bangladesh display greater nerve and skill in a winner-takes-all clash for a quarter-final place with a 15-run victory in Adelaide.

Now Afghanistan coach Andy Moles wants his free-spirited side, featuring pacemen Hamid Hassan and Shapoor Zadran, as well as several hard-hitting batsmen, to pile on the agony.

"They (England) are not in the best of nick at the moment and we still believe that, if at the top of the order with the bat especially, we just need to show a bit more composure, we've still got a scare in us," said Moles.

"If we can play well and hold our nerve on Friday, and we need to be at our very, very best and we need England not to be at their best, we can get a shock," the former Warwickshire batsman added.

England looked anxious during a run-chase that ended with them all out for 260 trying to overhaul Bangladesh's 275 for seven.

Freedom of play 

By contrast, Moles said his players' unrestrained approach held the key to an upset.

"I think it's just the freedom of play. It's one thing I've tried to allow to happen and enhance.. they must play the Afghan way."

Victory in Afghanistan's first one-day international against England would be a feather in Moles's cap.

"I suppose inevitably it is," he said.

"Coaching is a thankless task at times and when things don’t go well it is a lonely place to be," he said in an acknowledgement of the criticism engulfing England counterpart Peter Moores.

Afghanistan suffered a World Cup record 275-run defeat by Australia last week but England have no fast bowlers to compare with Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson, who shared six wickets between them in Perth.

England will be without opening batsman Moeen Ali (side strain) and all-rounder Chris Woakes (foot) after the pair injured themselves in Adelaide.

Their absence should see off-spinner James Tredwell and all-rounder Ravi Bopara making their first appearance each of this World Cup.

Recent experience shows just how dangerous the last match of a tournament can be for an already knocked-out England side.

England, in a display of rank incompetence even by their standards, were dismissed for just 88 in a 45-run World Twenty20 hammering by the Netherlands in Chittagong last year -- a defeat that cost Ashley Giles his position as England's limited overs coach

Now Afghanistan are looking to follow in the footsteps of their fellow non-Test nation, albeit in a different format.

"First and foremost, because of the (Bangladesh) result the other night, you want to get back on the horse quite quickly and put in a performance," said England all-rounder Chris Jordan.

Recalling the Dutch debacle in Chittagong, Jordan, who played in that game, added: “It’s times like those that help you get up in the morning and get back on that horse.

"They (Afghanistan) don’t have anything to lose. It's not a game we will be taking lightly at all."

AFP

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