Jamaica Observer / HARARE, Zimbabwe (AFP) — Afghanistan laid down a marker ahead of 2019 World Cup qualifying as fast bowler Dawlat Zadran took a hat-trick in a comfortable warm-up victory over West Indies in Harare on Tuesday. The Asian side dominated the match, which was reduced to 35-overs-a-side, to win by 29 runs on DLS method.
The World Cup qualifiers run from March 4-25 in Zimbabwe.
After rain ensured a shorter game than expected, Gulbadin Naib struck a 38-ball 48 after coming in at number 10 to guide Afghanistan to 163-9, setting two-time World Cup winners West Indies 140 to win on DLS.
Star batsman Chris Gayle fell for only nine in the Windies reply, before Zadran claimed the wickets of Shimron Hetmyer, Rovman Powell and Carlos Brathwaite in successive deliveries.
Teenage leg-spinner Rashid Khan, captaining Afghanistan in the absence of the injured Asghar Stanikzai, wrapped up the impressive win with figures of 2-7 in 3.4 overs.
Elsewhere in Tuesday’s warm-up matches, Nepal beat the United Arab Emirates by five wickets, while there were also wins for the Netherlands and Scotland over Hong Kong and Papua New Guinea respectively.
The match between hosts Zimbabwe and Ireland was abandoned without a ball being bowled.
Scores in brief (reduced to 35 overs):
Afghanistan 163-9 in 35 overs (Gulbadin Naib 48; Sheldon Cottrell 3-43) v West Indies110 in 26.4 overs (Evin Lewis 36; Dawlat Zadran 4-26)
Afghanistan win by 29 runs on DLS method