World Cup 2019: Mohammad Nabi picks up four, three in an over

After the 92-run opening stand involving Kusal Perera and Dimuth Karunaratne, off-spinner Mohammad Nabi applies brakes.

Afghanistan off-spinner Mohammad Nabi celebrates a wicket with his team-mates in the clash against Sri Lanka in Cardiff on Tuesday.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Afghanistan all-rounder Mohammad Nabi doesn’t claim four wickets in every game. The World Cup 2019 clash against Sri Lanka in Cardiff is a magic day. He became the second Afghan bowler — after Shapoor Zadran — to register a four-for in the World Cup.

Four years ago, left-arm pacer Zadran claimed 4/38 against Scotland in Dunedin.

On Tuesday at Sophia Gardens, Nabi invited the Sri Lankan batsmen to go for shots. He isn’t scared to get hit, but confident of claiming a wicket in the process.

The first wicket was a looped-up delivery that Dimuth Karunaratne (30 off 45 balls) wanted to connect over the bowler’s head. The ball found the long-on fielder instead.

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The next three wickets fell in the 22nd over.

Lahiru Thirimanne, who completed 3,000 runs in ODI cricket, was the first batsman to depart. He chopped a tossed up delivery onto his stumps. Nabi used the windy conditions to cut the ball slow through the air.

Kusal Mendis, the next batsman, edged his first ball which went past Rahmat Shah at first slip. They ran two and Mendis was back on strike. Nabi repeated the same delivery — pitching it outside off bringing the batsman forward. This time, Shah plucked the offering that came off the outside edge.

Nabi removed Angelo Mathews in the last ball of the over to finish with four wickets for 30 runs. The delivery to Mathews was a quicker one. He went for the cut and got an edge. The ball hit wicketkeeper Mohammad Shahzad’s pads before gifting Shah his second catch.