At the start of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018, a match-up between West Indies and Afghanistan would have been considered a clash between the tournament favorites. But the opening match of the Super Sixes stage will have one of the strongest team in the competition take on a team that has just about made it to this round.
Afghanistan won only one game in the league stage: a six-wicket win against Nepal. Coming into the Super Sixes carrying no points, they cannot afford to lose any matches. They have blown hot and cold in the league stages and have had to deal with some tough losses because their batting and bowling did not click together in the tournament.
In a tournament where not many things have gone right for Afghanistan, their senior all-rounder has risen to the occasion. He has scored 215 runs so far at an impressive average of 53.75 and picked up eight wickets in four matches. His presence in the middle order has been crucial to Afghanistan's chances and his off-spin bowling in the middle overs has provided the team with breakthroughs.
Afghanistan: Rashid Khan (c), Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Javed Ahmadi, Ihsanullah Janat, Najibullah Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Samiullah Shenwari, Nasir Jamal, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Dawlat Zadran, Shapoor Zadran, Afsar Zazai.
West Indies: Jason Holder (c), Jason Mohammed, Devendra Bishoo, Carlos Brathwaite, Sheldon Cottrell, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope (wk), Evin Lewis, Nikita Miller, Ashley Nurse, Rovman Powell, Kemar Roach, Marlon Samuels, Kesrick Williams.