Afghanistan have got one foot in the 2016 Under-19 World Cup after beating Nepal at the ACC Under-19 Premier League in Kuwait today.
Put into bat, Nepal struggled against the Afghan bowling line-up, with only two batsmen able to get past 20. Run scoring was slow, and they were only able to score 134 before being bowled out after 45 overs. Rashid Khan was the pick of the Afghan bowlers with 4-22.
Shahidullah led the way in Afghanistan's reply, scoring 52 from 59 balls before he was out. They chased down their target in 36 overs to win by 5 wickets.
Whilst Afghanistan could still mathematically be caught by Nepal and the UAE should they lose to hosts Kuwait tomorrow, their net run rate is such that they are pretty certain to be in the 2016 Under-19 World Cup in Bangladesh.
The other match of the day saw Saudi Arabia batting first against Malaysia after losing the toss. Five Saudi batsmen were dismissed for ducks as they were bowled out for just 39, Virandeep Singh taking three wickets for just four runs. Malaysia then knocked off the runs in 5.5 overs without losing a wicket.
Both teams have a day off tomorrow and will play their final matches on Sunday against Kuwait and the UAE respectively.
Afghanistan Under-19s beat Nepal Under-19s by 5 wickets
Tack-Tec Ground, Kuwait City, 14 November
Nepal Under-19s 134 (45 overs, Rashid Khan 4-22)
Afghanistan Under-19s 137-5 (36 overs, Shahidullah 52)
Malaysia Under-19s beat Saudi Arabia Under-19s by 10 wickets
Sulabiya Ground, Kuwait City, 14 November
Saudi Arabia Under-19s 39 (25.1 overs, Virandeep Singh 3-4)
Malaysia Under-19s 40-0 (5.5 overs)