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India outclass Afghanistan

PROVIDENCE, Guyana, May 1 (Reuters) - India opened their Twenty20 World Cup campaign with a comfortable seven-wicket win over debutants Afghanistan on Saturday. The part-timers from Afghanistan were outclassed in every department but posted a respectable total of 115 for eight thanks to 50 from opener Noor Ali and 30 by Asghar Stanikzai.

Despite losing three wickets, India had few problems reaching their target with 31 balls to spare. Murali Vijay top-scored with a brisk 48 that featured three sixes.

India play their next Group C match against South Africa on Sunday while Afghanistan meet the South Africans on Wednesday.

The top two teams advance.

Noor Ali made an even fifty as Afghanistan made 115 for eight off their 20 overs against India in the teams' World Twenty20 opener here on Saturday.

The qualifiers, making their debut in the competition, lost the toss and were in trouble at 29 for three.

Both Karim Sadiq and Mohammad Shahzad were caught behind trying to pull Ashish Nehra and captain Nowroz Mangal also fell cheaply.

But a fourth-wicket stand of 68 between the stylish Ali, who showed his class early on by square-driving Praveen Kumar for four, and the aggressive Ashgar Stanikzai, who hit three sixes in his 30, rebuilt the innings.

Left-arm quick Nehra led the bowling with three wickets for 19 runs in his four overs. ST LUSIA, AFP

	AFGHANISTAN
NOOR ALI c Dhoni b Nehra 50
KARIM SADIQ c Dhoni b Nehra 00
MOHAMMAD SHAHZAD c Dhoni b Nehra 06
NOWROZ MANGAL c Gambhir b Jadeja 05
ASHGAR STANIKZAI c Khan b Kumar 30
MOHAMMAD NABI c Dhoni b Kumar 00
RAEES AHAMADZAI not out 05
SSAMIULLAH SHENWARI run out(Jadeja/Dhoni)07
HAMID HASSAN c Nehra b Khan 06
SHAPOOR ZADRAN not out 00
Extras (lb3, w3) 06
Total (8 wkts, 20 overs) 115
Did not bat: Dawlat Ahmadzai
Fall of wickets: 1-6 (Sadiq), 2-22 (Shahzad), 3-29 (Mangal), 4-97 (Ali), 5-97 (Stanikzai), 6-97 (Nabi), 7-107 (Shenwari), 8-114 (Hassan).
Bowling: Kumar 3-0-14-2; Nehra 4-0-19-3; Khan 3-0-24-1 (1w); Jadeja 4-1-15-1; Yuvraj 1-0-4-0; Harbhajan 4-0-24-0 (1w); Pathan 1-0-12-0 (1w)
INDIA INNINGS
G. GAMBHIR c Mohammad Nabi b Dawlat Ahmadzai 	 04
M. VIJAY c Shapoor Zadran b Hamid Hassan 48
S. RAINA lbw b Samiullah Shenwari 18
YUVRAJ SINGH not out 23
MS DHONI not out 15
EXTRAS (lb-1, w-3, nb-4) 08
TOTAL (three wkts; 14.5 overs) 116

FALL OF WICKETS: 1-19 2-46 3-101
BOWLING: Dawlat Ahmadzai 2-0-21-1 (1nb), Shapoor Zadran
2-0-6-0 (1w), Mohammad Nabi 3-0-33-0 (1nb), Samiullah Shenwari
2-0-11-1 (1w), Karim Sadiq 2-0-22-0 (2nb, 1w), Hamid Hassan
3-0-8-1, Nowroz Mangal 0.5-0-14-0.
Umpires: Aleem Dar (PAK) and Marais Erasmus (RSA)
TV umpire: Simon Taufel (AUS)
Match referee: Ranjan Madugalle (SRI)

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