Aussies beat Afghanistan

Former world champions Australia defeated a battling Afghanistan team by 66 runs in the first-ever limited overs international between the two sides.

Australia did well to reach 272-8 in their 50 overs despite some hiccups in the middle overs before overcoming a tough mid-innings resistance by Afghanistan who in the end were bowled out for 206 in 43.5 overs on Saturday.

Michael Clarke hit a 94-ball 75 while Matthew Wade also made 75 off 108 balls to take Australia to a fighting total on a dry Sharjah Stadium pitch.

The match, which started at 6.00 pm local time to avoid the heat and ended early Sunday, was Afghanistan’s second against a full Test-playing side after they met Pakistan in February this year.

Strapping new-ball bowlers Mitchell Starc (4-47) and James Pattinson (3-46) rattled Afghanistan’s top order with some vicious short and full length deliveries, dismissing the first four batsmen for 49 runs to set up the victory.

Brief scores: Australia: 272 for 8 in 50 overs (Michael Clarke 75, Mike Hussey 49; Sadiq 2-22) bt Afghanistan: 206 all out in 43.5 overs (Stanikzai 66; Nabi 46; James Pattinson 3-46, Mithcell Starc 4-47).

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