DUBAI, Sept 26: To pull off a tie against a team like India is as good as a victory, says Afghanistan captain Asghar Afghan, who feels his unfancied side would have been in Asia Cup finals had it played its league matches here instead of Abu Dhabi.
India and Afghanistan played out a thrilling tie on Tuesday night after Mohammad Shahzad led his team to 252 for eight with a sensational hundred.
�When you tie a match with a side like India, it�s just like a win. India have chased easily in the last two games but we made it tough for them. Such tough games are good for the fans as well,� said Afghan after the nail-biting finish of the Asia Cup.
Afghanistan came into the game after losing two close games against Pakistan and Bangladesh earlier in Super Four. They had comprehensively beaten Sri Lanka and Bangladesh in the group stage, reaffirming their rapid rise in international cricket.
�I was sure we�ll play in the final. I knew the conditions in Dubai were suitable for us, because the amount of cricket we�ve played here. For us the hard luck was all our matches were in Abu Dhabi.
�If it was on this track, I can tell with confirmation that Afghanistan would�ve been in the final. Hamare saath thodi bewafayi hui hai (This was unfair to us),� said the skipper referring to the controversial scheduling of the event.
Afghan praised Shahzad besides talking about the improvement in batting which has been considered the team�s weakest link.
�Definitely, we have improved in our batting. Previously this was our weak area and we�re working on it regularly. In the Asia Cup it was okay but when we�re going to a mega event like the World Cup, there is still lots to improve because conditions in Asia and Europe are different,� he said.
On Shahzad, he said: �Played very positive cricket. Their opening partnership was good and our spinners did an equally good job. Every time we have asked him, Shahzad has done the job for us. He played well in the last game too but today he was the real Shahzad.� � PTI