SHARJAH: Rahmat Shah hit a career best 114 while leg-spin wizard Rashid Khan took four wickets as Afghanistan trounced Zimbabwe by 154 runs in the first one-day international on Friday in a huge boost ahead of next month´s World Cup qualifiers.
Rahmat smashed his runs off just 110 balls with eight boundaries and four sixes as Afghanistan piled up 333-5 off 50 overs.
Najibullah Zadran clobbered an undefeated 81 off just 51 balls with five boundaries and five towering sixes. Opener Ihsanullah hit a confident half century.
Zimbabwe were then dismissed for just 179 in the 35th over with 19-year-old Rashid Khan claiming 4-26 to steer Afghanistan to victory.
In another sign that the future of Afghanistan cricket is bright, 16-year-old leg-spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman opened the bowling for his team and picked up two wickets.
The two teams play four more one-dayers in the UAE before meeting again in Zimbabwe in March in the qualifying tournament for the 2019 World Cup.
Afghanistan 333-5 in 50 overs (Rahmat Shah 114, Najibullah Zadran 81 not out, Ihsanullah 54) v Zimbabwe 179 all out in 34.4 overs (Rashid Khan 4-26)
Afghanistan won by 154 runs