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Afghanistan win Thunder Nation Cup

23 January 2019

Afghanistan with Mark Waugh

Afghanistan captain top-scored to lead his side to victory over Nepal at Spotless Stadium

Afghanistan has won its first Thunder Nation Cup after beating Nepal by five wickets in the final at Spotless Stadium yesterday.

This year the Thunder Nation Cup was contested by teams representing Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Fiji, Nepal and African Nations with close to 1,000 participants trialing to represent their community.

After the competition earlier this season, Afghanistan and Nepal progressed through to the decider making it the first time in four years that India and Pakistan have not contested the final.

After winning the toss and electing to bowl first, Afghanistan got off to the perfect start with a first ball wicket. Nepal's Saheel Khan made a handy 17 runs however tight work in the field by the Afghans restricted Nepal to 4-42 from their six overs.

Defending 42, Nepal took a couple of early wickets however Afghanistan captain and former Sydney Thunder Community Rookie Hameed Kherkhah steadied the ship, making 19* to steer his side to victory with eight balls to spare.

“For a lot of the guys it’s a dream come true to play here,” said Kherkhah after the match.

“The win means a lot to us. We made the semi-finals a few years ago but today we were in the final and we got over the line so it was pretty good. It means a lot to everybody in our community.”