The Afghanistan team will be one of the six Nations to participate in the Asia Cup 2022. A team which has never been able to lift the trophy in its history so far will be eager to make a mark in the upcoming edition of the tournament. The team is looking to be in a pretty fine rhythm presently after drawing a high voltage T20I series 2-2 against Ireland.
The Mohammed Nabi lead side will look to prove its worth in all the departments of the game and have a serious impact in the tournament that is to begin shortly. With the squad and quality of players that they possess, the team has got all the chances to surprise everyone and upset other giant cricketing nations that are participating in the tournament. Let’s take a look at the possible Playing XI for Afghanistan in the Asia Cup 2022:-
Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK)
20-year-old Rahmanullah Gurbaz will surely be the first choice opener for Afghanistan in the Asia Cup. The right-hander has a unique ability to play attacking shots early on in the innings and provide lightning-fast starts to his side.
With a T20I career strike rate of 133.4, he is really going to be handy for the Afghanistan side while batting up the order in the Asia Cup.
Hazratullah Zazai though has been a bit irregular in terms of featuring into his team’s playing XI in the recent matches is expected to play alongside Rahmanullah in the opening slot in the Asia Cup.
The left-hander has got amazing big-hitting abilities and can give quick-fire starts to his team with his attacking approach in the first few overs of the powerplay.
His taking the opposition bowling line up to the cleaners every now and then is going to be crucial for Afghanistan.
Ibrahim Zadran looked good with the bat in the recent series against Ireland and played quite a few handful of knocks in the middle order. He has been a pillar in the lineup for his side holding one end firmly and steering the innings steadily throughout the innings.
His presence on the pitch will be of great use to his side during the Asia Cup as he cements his place at no.3 in the line up.
Left-handed Najibullah Zadran has been one of the greatest rising stars for his side in the recent past with the bat. The young middle-order batsman has the ability to clear the fence at will and perform on a regular basis in the shorter formats which makes him a proper batsman to fill up the no.4 slot.
Zadran is in the fine form currently and has smashed a fine fifty in the recent series vs Ireland.
Samiullah Shenwari owing to some quality performances with the bat in the recent Shpageeza Cricket League 2022 has been selected into the squad of Afghanistan that is to feature in the Asia Cup. The 34-year-old batsman last played an international match for his side back in 2020.
The right-hander has got the ability to smash the ball hard in the death overs and also play the safe game early on in the innings which might be useful to his side in the Asia Cup.
Mohammed Nabi (C)
Next in comes skipper Mohammed Nabi who will be a massive factor for his side in the Asia Cup. The right-hander has been a massively important part of his side in the last several years during the major tournaments and will have a major role to play in the Asia Cup too.
The 37-year-old is a clean hitter of the ball and can also be of great impact with the ball under crucial circumstances.His living up to his worth will be important for his side to lift the trophy this year.
Another massively useful all-rounder, Rashid Khan will follow his skipper Nabi in the batting order. A world-class spinner who can turn the game on its head for his side all by himself, Rashid has been the hero for Afghanistan several times before this.
He also can be an extremely handy Batsman who can smash quick runs towards the later half of the innings. His all round skills will be of great use to his side in the Asia Cup 2022.
Naveen Ul Haq
Afghanistan’s bowling lineup will expectedly consist of young sensation Naveen Ul Haq. The 22-year-old has been in great rhythm with the ball in the recent series vs Ireland.
With 25 wickets in his T20I career so far that spans just 17 games, he is going to be a crucial addition to his side in the Asia Cup.
Mujeeb Ur Rahman
Mujeeb Ur Rahman will be accompanying Rashid Khan to strengthening the spin department of the team. The spinner though not much effective in terms of picking wickets nowadays can be of great use to hole the runs in the middle overs. His being in a good rhythm with the ball in the Asia Cup will be important for his side.
Fareed Ahmed will possibly be another member of Afghanistan’s pace battery in the Asia Cup. The pacer though has been a part of the squad for quite some years now, but hasn’t been able to cement his place in the playing XI on a regular basis.
A good spell of bowling in the recent series against Ireland might perhaps provide him with an opportunity to find a place in his side’s playing XI for the Asia Cup.
Fazalhaq Farooqi is another rising star who is possibly going to be a part of Afghanistan’s bowling department in the Asia Cup. With his noteworthy performances in his short T20I career so far, he has managed to draw the attention of several T20 franchises from all around the world.
At just 21 years of age, the bowler has managed to produce impressive numbers of 12 wickets with an economy of just 6 and will be a key bowler for Afghanistan in Asia Cup 2022.
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