On this day: Afghanistan play their first-ever ODI match

Afghanistan Cricket Team

19th April 2009 is an important day in the history of Afghanistan cricket. It was on this day that the Afghanistan cricket team played their first-ever match in ODI cricket. On this historic day, the Nawroz Mangal led Afghanistan side won the toss and elected to wield the willow first against Scotland.

And, the Afghanistan batsmen produced a riveting performance with the willow in their very first outing in ODI cricket. The Afghan openers, Noor Ali Zadran and Karim Sadiq put on a blistering opening partnership of 55 runs in just 6.5 overs. Zadran was the wrecker in chief and scored a blazing 45 off just 28 deliveries. Karim Sadiq played a sedate innings and scored a 22-ball 20.

Apart from the openers, the likes of Mohammad Nabi and Samiullah Shinwari scored timely half-centuries. While Nabi scored 58 off 64 deliveries, Shinwari scored a 57-ball 52, as the Afghanistan side put up a huge total of 295/8 on the board.

In reply, the Scotland batting line-up came a cropper. Both the Scotland openers were dismissed within the first 4 overs, to leave the side reeling at 11/2. Kyle Coetzer and Neil McCallum were involved in a 61-run stand for the third wicket. While Coetzer scored 44 off 46 deliveries, McCallum helped his way to 36.

After the departure of Coetzer and McCallum, only John Blain offered some resistance, by scoring a 56-ball 41 for Scotland. The rest of the Scotland willow wielders failed to step up to the occasion and the Ryan Watson led side was bowled out for just 206. Afghanistan started their ODI journey in incredible fashion and thrashed the Scotland side by 89 runs. Mohammad Nabi was awarded the Player of the Match award for his 58 with the willow.

And from there on, Afghanistan cricket has grown leaps and bounds. The side even participated in the 2015 and 2019 ODI World Cups as well. But then, 19th April 2009 will always remain special for all Afghanistan cricket fans.