Ireland beaten by Afghanistan in T20 opener in India

Stuart Thompson was the best of the Irish with the bat against Afghanistan in the first T20
Stuart Thompson was the best of the Irish with the bat against Afghanistan in the first T20
First T20 international, Greater Noida
Ireland: 165-5 (20 overs) Thompson 56, Wilson 41 no, Hamza 2-23
Afghanistan: 171-4 (18.0 overs) Shenwari 56, Shahzad 47, Thompson 1-17
Afghanistan won by six wickets

Ireland started the three-match T20 series against Afghanistan with a six-wicket defeat in India on Wednesday.

Opener Stuart Thompson hit 56 while Gary Wilson (41 no) and captain William Porterfield (39) added valuable runs as Ireland made 165-5 in Greater Noida.

It was not enough with Samiullah Shenwari (56) and Mohammad Shahzad (47) helping the Afghans to 171-4 with two overs to spare.

The sides meet again in the second T20 at the same venue on Friday.

Ireland suffered an early blow when opener Paul Stirling was dismissed for a duck and with just one run on the board.

Thompson and Porterfield steadied the innings before Wilson helped the Irish to a competitive total.

Afghans ease to total

Shahzad and Najeeb Tarakai (27) put on an opening stand of 51 as Afghanistan cruised to their victory target.

Afghan spinner Amir Hamza (2-23) was the only bowler to take more than one wicket on a day when the bat dominated.

"We fell a little bit short of potentially a very big score. We could have added another 15 and gotten up to the 180 we were looking for," said Porterfield.

"As well as we played I thought we just came up short with the ball. We didn't quite execute things as well as we would have liked."

The loss of paceman Boyd Rankin for the T20s, because of a back problem, was another setback for the Irish on Wednesday.

Rankin is expected to return for the five ODIs against Afghanistan, starting on 15 March.

Ireland fixtures
Afghanistan10 March (T20)
Afghanistan12 March (T20)
Afghanistan15 March (ODI)
Afghanistan17 March (ODI)
Afghanistan19 March (ODI)
Afghanistan22 March (ODI)
Afghanistan24 March (ODI)
Afghanistan28-31 March (Intercontinental Cup)

Top Stories