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Mohammed Nabi, the Asia Cup star who is first Afghan player to score more than 5000 runs in international cricket, breaks the record

AN Asian cricket hero has become the first Afghanistan player to smash 5,000 international runs.

Mohammed Nabi reached the landmark figure in today’s Asia Cup group-stage clash against Sri Lanka.

Mohammed Nabi reached the landmark figure in today’s Asia Cup group-stage clash against Sri Lanka

Yet his stalwart innings of 65 from 32 balls was not quite enough for victory, as the 38-year-old side’s agonisingly lost by just two runs.

His 24-ball half-century set a new record for Afghanistan in one-day internationals.

And his 5,000 landmark has been widely acclaimed, with Indian international Ravi Ashwin hailing Nabi’s innings as “extraordinary” and others describing him as “fantastic” and “extraordinary”.

His latest effort took him to 5,011 runs in 259 international matches, at an average of 24.56 – including one century of 116 and 21 fifties.

His team-mate Rashid Khan was shown heartbroken after the defeat before sharing an emotional message with supporters.

The result at Pakistan’s Gaddafi Stadium denied Afghanistan a place in the Super Four stage of this year’s Asia Cup.

Khan was left stranded at the non-striker’s end at the climax, watching as his side were bowled out despite his 27 runs of 16 balls.

He later told fans on X/Twitter: “In sport there are many ups and downs. You learn, grow and come back stronger.

“Thank you for always supporting us.”

A fan wrote online how they “felt extremely sad for the great Afghan heroes Rashid Khan and Mohammed Nabi”.

The next round of knock-out matches begins on Wednesday, with Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka pitted against each other.

All four sides, as well as Afghanistan, will take part in the ten-team Cricket World Cup opening in India on October 5.

Reigning champions England, captained by Jos Buttler and featuring stars such as Test skipper Ben Stokes, are among the tournament favourites ahead of a final scheduled for November 19.

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