India restrict Afghanistan to 115-8

ST LUCIA: Indian pacers bowled remarkably well to restrict Afghanistan at 115 runs for eight wickets in a Group C match in the World Twenty20 cricket here at Beausejour Stadium on Saturday.

After being put into bat by India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Afghan could not resist against Indian bowling as Ashish Nehra captured three wickets for 19 runs and Praveen Kumar claimed two for 14 while Zaheer Khan and Ravindra Jadeja took one wicket each.

Opener Noor Ali batted very well and succeeded in completing his first fifty in T20 internationals. He made exact 50 from 48 balls with four boundaries.

Middle-order batsman Ashgar Stanikzai also played well and made 30 from 33 balls with three sixes.

They were the only batsmen in the double-figures and both added 68 for the fourth wicket stand but after three quick dismissals the Afghan batsmen could take their score only to 115 as their overs quota ended.

India omitted four players - Rohit Sharma, Vinay Kumar, Piyush Chawla and Dinesh Karthik - from the final eleven.

This was qualifiers'' Afghanistan''s first match in the World Twenty20.

Afghanistan: Nowroz Mangal (captain), Mohammad Nabi, Karim Sadiq, Raees Ahmadzai, Dawlat Ahmadzai, Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Hamid Hassan, Samiullah Shinwari, Noor Ali, Ashgar Stanikzai, Shahpoor Zadran

India: Gautam Gambhir, Murali Vijay, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain/wk), Yusuf Pathan, Ravindra Jadeja, Harbhajan Singh, Praveen Kumar, Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra.