Ex-Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan and Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan were spotted celebrating exuberantly at the Chepauk ground following Afghanistan’s groundbreaking victory over Pakistan in their World Cup 2023 match in Chennai. It marked Afghanistan’s first-ever ODI win against Pakistan.
After succumbing to Pakistan in seven previous ODI encounters, including two closely contested matches, Afghanistan, at last, exhibited remarkable composure as they successfully pursued a challenging target in Chennai. This triumph marked their second upset in the tournament, following their victory over England in Delhi just eight days ago.
With both Afghanistan and Pakistan now accumulating four points each from five games, courtesy of two wins each, this victory propelled Afghanistan into the middle of the points table. In contrast, England found themselves relegated to the bottom position with just one win in four games.
Following their remarkable victory, the Afghanistan players and their support staff embarked on a lap of honor at the Chepauk, eliciting a standing ovation from the Chennai crowd.
Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan, a fervent supporter of the Afghanistan cricket team, joined in the celebrations, dancing with Rashid Khan on the field. Irfan Pathan, fulfilling his broadcasting responsibilities near the boundary line, coincidentally found himself in close proximity to Rashid Khan and his teammates during their lap of honor. Upon spotting Rashid Khan, both of them engaged in an impromptu and lively dance, clearly relishing the moment.
Irfan Pathan joined Rashid Khan in a celebratory dance after Afghanistan’s historic victory over Pakistan
In regards to the match, Afghanistan displayed a remarkable team effort. The inclusion of wrist-spinner Noor Ahmad specifically for this game proved to be a masterstroke as he shone on his World Cup debut, claiming a three-wicket haul by dismissing key Pakistani batsmen, including Babar Azam, Shafique, and Rizwan. Babar top-scored with 74, Shafique contributed 58, and Shadab and Iftikhar added 40 runs each, propelling Pakistan to a total of 282.
Many believed this target would be sufficient for Pakistan to defend. However, Afghanistan had different, well-thought-out plans. Their batsmen remained composed throughout the chase, avoiding the panic that had plagued them in previous matches.
Impressively, their top three batsmen all notched up half-centuries: Rahmanullah Gurbaz scored 65 runs, Ibrahim Zadran contributed 87 runs, and Rahmat Shah remained unbeaten with 77 runs. Captain Hashmatullah Shahidi, batting at number four, also delivered an excellent performance, scoring an unbeaten 48 runs off 45 balls. For his stellar contribution, Ibrahim Zadran was rightfully awarded the Player of the Match title.