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T20 World Cup: Afghanistan reminds me of 1996 Sri Lanka team, says Muttiah Muralitharan


Legendary spinner Muttiah Muralitharan feels if Afghanistan continue to bowl as they did against Scotland, the team could be a “real threat” in the ongoing T20 World Cup. Afghanistan walked to Scotland in their opening match of Group 2 in the 2020 T20 World Cup on Monday after a 130-run victory over Scotland. “I was amazed by the Afghan spinners, they have so far been the choice of bowlers for me,” Muralitharan said in an ICC statement.

“It is true that they may have played against one of the weaker teams, but the way Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Rashid Khan bowled against Scotland was incredible – the batsmen were enchanted.”

“If they can bowl like that in other matches, then they can really be a threat,” he added.

Sri Lanka won the EDI World Cup in 1996 and Muralitharan said Afghanistan reminds him a bit of the Sri Lanka team as the team “had a lot of experienced batsmen and then some good young bowlers”.

“In some ways they remind me a bit of Sri Lanka when we won the 50-over ICC Men’s World Cup in 1996. It’s too early to say for sure, but if their three spinners bowl well, you never know what might happen. not.” said Muralitharan

“When I think back to 1996, we had a lot of experienced batsmen and then some good young bowlers. The conditions helped us, we were very strong at home throughout the 1990s and we knew how to play the conditions. It was not “We had the talent.”

“The same goes for Afghanistan, you have Mohammad Nabi who has been playing for a long time and then some promising young batsmen – Hazratullah Zazai and Rahmanullah Gurbaz did well against Scotland,” he added.

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Muralitharan explained why Afghanistan is the “dark horse” in the ongoing T20 World Cup.

“It’s without even considering the spinners. In the shorter form, they have a lot of experience playing franchise cricket. So I do not see why they can not be dark horses in this tournament,” Muralitharan said.

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