Afghanistan’s young left-arm wrist spinner, Noor Ahmad, etched his name in World Cup history during the ICC World Cup 2023 clash against Pakistan.

Noor Ahmad’s exceptional figures of three wickets for 49 runs marked him as Afghanistan’s most successful bowler on a World Cup debut. He surpassed Shapoor Zardan’s 2-20 against Bangladesh in the 2015 tournament. His crucial dismissals of Abdullah Shafique, Mohammad Rizwan, and Babar Azam underscored his significance in critical moments.

The 18-year-old replaced the pace bowler Fazalhaq Farooqi, as Afghanistan sought to adapt to the spin-friendly conditions of Chennai. This tactical move paid off, and Noor Ahmad validated the decision made by Hashmatullah Shahidi.

Pakistan’s batting effort saw them set a competitive target of 283 runs for their Asian counterparts, thanks to noteworthy contributions from Babar, Abdullah, Iftikhar Ahmed, and Shadab Khan. Despite facing setbacks, with the score at 120-3 in 24.4 overs, Babar’s tenacity propelled the Green Shirts to a respectable total.

Following Babar’s departure, Iftikhar took charge of Pakistan’s innings, playing an aggressive knock, amassing 40 runs off 27 deliveries with two fours and four sixes, once again demonstrating his value to the team.

Having met seven times in ODIs, Pakistan has emerged victorious in all encounters against Afghanistan.

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