New Zealand chased down a target of 125 to defeat Afghanistan and seal their place in the T20 World Cup semi-finals. The result also confirms an early exit for India, whose final game against Namibia is now academic.
Afghanistan stumbled to 19-3 and then 56-4 before Najibullah Zadran struck 73 off 48 balls to boost their hopes of an upset and earning a place in the final four themselves. Trent Boult claimed Zadran’s wicket, one of three for the fast bowler as Afghanistan finished their 20 overs on 124-8.
New Zealand made steady progress in their response, Martin Guptill making 28 before being dismissed by Rashid Khan. The captain, Kane Williamson, and wicketkeeper Devon Conway then formed a solid partnership to get New Zealand over the line in the 19th over, for the loss of just two wickets.
Pakistan are expected to secure top spot in Group 2 by beating Scotland in Sunday’s second match. That would mean New Zealand will face England in Wednesday’s first semi-final, with Pakistan and Australia meeting on Thursday.