After won the first ODI by a huge 138 runs margin, Afghanistan set to play the second ODI match against Ireland on Thursday. These two top associate teams looking for a glory and the host Afghanistan leads with 1-0 in the three-match series. Will Ireland win and level the series or will it one-sided game again? Second ODI between Afghanistan vs Ireland scheduled to start at 2:30 PM Local | 6 PM IST on Thursday, 7th December 2017.



The batting unit struggled in the middle-overs but lower middle-order helped Afghanistan to post 238 for the loss 9 wickets in 50 overs in the first ODI on Tuesday. There were lots of ups and downs during Afghanistan innings but in the end they have posted competitive total at typical Sharjah International Stadium. Later on the day, the debutant Mujeeb Zadran and Rashid Khan gone through deep in Ireland batting and sealed the victory for their team. The 16-years old teenager Mujeeb won player of the match reward on his debut. Javed Ahmadi and Ihsanullah started the proceedings for Afghanistan at top of the order. Both of them managed to score each 10 runs and added only 12 runs for the opening partnership. After that an average show, either one of them possibly make a way for the experienced opener Noor Ali Zadran. As Ihsanullah scored an amazing hundred in the Intercontinental cup recently, he may get a second chance in this game. The pillar of Afghanistan top order in the ODIs, Rahmat Shah scored another half-century in the last game. He is one of the important player in Afghan unit and he has all capacity to convert a good start into a big ton in the next game. Nasir Jamal batted at crucial no. 4 and scored a much needed half-century which will holds the place for him in the XI on Thursday afternoon.

Skipper Asghar Stanikzai not cope up with the expectation and dismissed for just 2 runs other day. He is one of the most talented and experienced batsman in the squad and he knew how to come back stronger after that failure in the first game. Stanikzai might play a match winning knock in this game on Thursday. The star all rounder Mohammad Nabi dismissed for narrow duck in the first game. The explosive batsman in the middle-order ran out in that game but he will learn from mistakes and could play key role in this game. Meanwhile, Nabi has done a good job with a ball and picked 1 for 14 in 5 overs with his off-spin. He is one of the must pick category player for this game. Other all-rounder Gulbadin Naib batted at no. 7 and helped the team by building a partnership along with Rashid Khan. He managed to score 17 runs and bowled only 3 overs. But Naib may be play much better role in this game with both bat and bowl. The star bowler Rashid Khan pulled back the team from the disaster to decent total with his knock of 48 off 49 balls. He smashed 4 fours and a six in that knock and he also shined with a ball as he do always. He has 3 more wickets to his ODI career and will do more damage on Thursday. The wicket-keeper batsman Shafiqullah Shafiq batted at no. 9 and that proves us the deep of Afghan’s batting line-up. Shafiqullah played an outstanding innings and scored quick fire 36 off just 23 balls in depth overs. The front-line pace option Dawlat Zadran bowled well other night and picked 2 for 13 in his 6 overs spell which includes 3 maiden overs too. The young debutant Mujeeb Zadran has stolen the attention of all with his spell of 4 for 24 runs in 10 overs. His performances will keep away the chances of left-arm spinner Hamza Hotak and chances are high for Mujeeb to succeed with his bowling again on Thursday.



Ireland has already faced series loss to Afghanistan in India earlier this year, so some revenge were expected from them in this series. But they have surrendered completely when bowled out for 100 runs on Tuesday night. Ireland bowlers did a good job in first 40 overs or so, but they were leaked runs in the end overs. While chasing the target of 239, skipper William Porterfield alone scored 30+ runs in the innings and rest of the top and middle-order collapsed completely. Ireland team will open the innings with their regular openers William Porterfield and Paul Stirling. The all-rounder Paul Stirling was impressive with his bowling spell of none for 17 in 6 overs but he failed to score runs with a bat. He managed to score only 5 runs in that game but we can expect good come back innings from this explosive top order player. Andrew Balbirnie destroyed all the hopes and dismissed for zero other day. He has proved his talents at various situations in the international matches, hopefully, he will have a good day with a bat on Thursday. Niall O’Brien was back in the side and scored only 4 runs in the first match. The experienced wicket-keeper will keep the place in the XI and may come with handy innings too.

The star all-rounder Kevin O’Brien had some an average day of cricket on Tuesday. First he conceded 50 runs in 10 overs spell and picked one wicket only, later on he came to bat at crucial time and dismissed for only 3 runs. He is the savior of the team, if he comes with his A-game then he will help the team to level the series. Middle-order batsman Gary Wilson also dismissed for a single-digit score and thrown the opportunity other night. He has over 1700 runs in the ODI career and those would help him to gain confidence ahead of this game. All-rounder Simi Singh had a good game against Scotland in the Intercontinental cup game last week then he had a straight opposite game against Afghanistan on Tuesday. He conceded 36 runs in his 5 overs and also managed to score only 5 runs in that game. He is emerging player in the side and he will get a second chance in this game. Irish team gave an importance to a batting unit than a bowling unit by adding extra batsmen to the XI. George Dockrell, Tim Murtagh and Boyd Rankin were the specialist bowlers has played in the last game along with all-rounders. Tim Murtagh justified his selection by claiming 3 crucial wickets for 28 runs in 10 overs while Boyd Rankin also bowled well and picked 4 for 44 in his spell. Spinner George Dockrell had a bad day and remained wicket-less. Possibilities are there for Ireland to bring in extra spin option of Jacob Mulder in the XI, that case either Simi Singh or Stuart Poynter will make a way for him. Barry McCarthy and Peter Chase may need to wait for their chances after that good performances from Murtagh and Rankin.




  • Ihsanullah Janat
  • Rahmat Shah
  • Asghar Stanikzai
  • Mohammad Nabi
  • Rashid Khan
  • Shafiqullah Shafiq
  • Mujeeb Zadran
  • Dawlat Zadran



  • William Porterfield
  • Paul Stirling
  • Kevin O’Brien
  • Andrew Balbirnie
  • Gary Wilson
  • George Dockrell
  • Tim Murtagh
  • Boyd Rankin




1. Noor Ali Zadran / Javed Ahmadi, 2. Ihsanullah, 3. Rahmat Shah, 4. Asghar Stanikzai, 5. Nasir Jamal, 6. Mohammad Nabi, 7. Shafiqullah Shafiq, 8. Gulbadin Naib, 9. Rashid Khan, 10. Dawlat Zadran, 11. Mujeeb Zadran.


1. William Porterfield, 2. Paul Stirling, 3. Andrew Balbirnie, 4. Niall O’Brien, 5. Gary Wilson, 6. Kevin O’Brien, 7. Simi Singh, 8. Stuart Poynter / Jacob Mulder, 9. George Dockrell, 10. Tim Murtagh, 11. Boyd Rankin.



Anand Thiyagarajan

Cricket is what everyone loves. If you’re ready to play fantasy cricket but don’t know how to analyze players, consider his Articles as the foundation of your fantasy teams. Anand is a cricket blogger and fantasy cricket lover.

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