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CricketAfghanistan register 6-wkt win over Sri Lanka in first ODI

Srinagar: Despite missing out star player Rashid Khan, visitors Afghanistan registered six-wicket win against hosts Sri Lanka in the first of three one-day internationals on Friday.

Ibrahim Zadran (98) and Rahmat Shah (55) top scored to steer the visitors to 269-4 in the 47th over after they won the toss and chose to field first in Hambantota.

Earlier Charith Asalanka top-scored with 91 to help Sri Lanka reach a below-par 268 all out after a shaky start pushed them to 84-3 inside 20 overs.

Zadran raced to his half-century in just 35 balls and hit 11 fours and two sixes in his innings.

Zadran and Shah anchored the Afghan innings after other opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz fell for 14 in the sixth over.

Mohammad Nabi (27) and Najibullah Zadran (7) remained unbeaten at the end to steer Afghanistan to victory.

Sri Lanka’s Lahiru Kumara took 1-21 in 4.3 overs as other Sri Lanka bowlers failed to make a dent.

Earlier, a 99-run stand between Asalanka and Dhananjaya de Silva for the fifth wicket rescued the hosts. De Silva made 51 before being bowled by Nabi.

After the dismissal of De Silva, captain Dasun Shanaka added 32 runs for the sixth wicket with Asalanka, but bowler Noor Ahmad accounted for the skipper with a well-disguised googly.

Dushan Hemantha backed up Asalanka well in a 48-run stand for the seventh wicket. He made 22.

Asalanka scored his 91 off 95 balls with 12 fours, before being run out in the last over.

Sri Lanka will use the series as preparation for World Cup qualifiers this month in Zimbabwe.

Afghanistan are already through to the sport’s showpiece event this year in India and will be testing their combinations.

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