2 22 year old batsmen are making a splash in the T20 World Cup, both from the same country, made 2 century partnerships and also caused upsets

Orhan Wadia
Orhan Wadia - Editor
6 Min Read

New Delhi. This is possibly the youngest opening pair in world cricket. Afghanistan's Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran (rehmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran) are both just 22 years old but there is amazing maturity in their batting. Both are adept at setting the 'tone' of batting according to the situation. While most of the veterans have been seen struggling in the T20 World Cup 2024, the bats of these two are spewing a lot of runs. Afghanistan has made it to the Super 8 by winning all three of its matches so far and the opening pair has a special contribution in this performance. The Afghan team easily defeated Papua New Guinea by 7 wickets in their third match.

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Gurbaz and Zadran are among the top-5 batsmen of the current tournament. Wicketkeeper batsman Gurbaz has scored the most 167 runs (average 55.66, strike rate 154.62) with the help of two half-centuries in 3 matches, while Zadran has scored 114 runs (average 38, strike rate 153.33) with the help of a half-century in 3 matches and is fourth in this list. After last year's ODI World Cup (World Cup 2023), the excellent performance of both of them in the T20 World Cup is also a sign of their bright future. There are special reasons for this great 'tuning' between these two openers of Afghanistan. Both come from the same village in Afghanistan and understand each other's game well. Gurbaz had said in an interview, 'We both have the same haircut. We play from the same club. We have been opening together since the Under-16 and Under-19 level.

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Two century partnerships have been made so far
It is not easy to score runs on the slow wickets with uneven bounce of T20 World Cup 2024. Even legends like Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson are struggling on these wickets but Gurbaz-Zadran have so far scored runs here at a good strike rate and average. Amidst the dominance of batsmen over bowlers, there have been only 4 century partnerships in T20 World Cup 2024 so far, out of which 2 are in the name of this Afghan pair. This also includes the biggest partnership of 154 runs in the tournament so far (against Uganda). Both of them have also shared a 103-run partnership against New Zealand. However, both of them could not play a big innings in the match against Papua New Guinea.

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Afghan team defeated New Zealand
Afghanistan's spectacular victory against a strong team like New Zealand reflects its growing status in the T20 format. Let us tell you that this is Gurbaz's third T20 World Cup. In his first T20 World Cup in 2021, he scored 85 runs in 5 matches and in 2022 he scored 68 runs in three matches. At the same time, Zadran scored 80 runs in three matches in his first World Cup in 2022.

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The Afghan team has been playing the T20 World Cup since 2010

Talking about the Afghanistan team, it has been a part of the T20 World Cup since 2010 and is playing its 7th World Cup. In the current tournament, Rashid Khan's team has raised hopes of advancing beyond the Super 8 with its performance so far, but this will be possible only if it maintains its excellent performance against big teams. The Afghanistan team has played 25 matches in the T20 World Cup so far, out of which it has won 10 and lost 15. (Statistics till the Afghanistan-Papua New Guinea match of June 14)

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Both of them also shone in ODI World Cup 2023

Before this performance in the T20 World Cup, Gurbaz and Zadran have also made a splash in the 2023 ODI World Cup. In this World Cup held in India, Zadran was Afghanistan's top scorer by scoring 376 runs in 9 matches. In the match against Australia, he played an unbeaten innings of 129 runs. At the same time, Gurbaz scored 280 runs in 9 matches with the help of two half-centuries. The special thing is that he scored these runs at a strike rate of 98.93.

tag: afghanistan cricket, ICC T20 World Cup, Rehmanullah Gurbaz, T20 World Cup

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