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Pakistan’s captain Shadab Khan looks on during the ICC men’s Twenty20 World Cup 2022 cricket warm-up match between Pakistan and England at the Gabba in Brisbane on October 17, 2022. — AFP

In the wake of the Green Shirt’s loss against Afghanistan in the first game of the three-match T20I series, Pakistan skipper Shadab Khan admitted the team didn’t play well as new players couldn’t perform due to nervousness.

“We entered the field with new players, who did not perform well due to nervousness,” the captain said when speaking during a post-match presser in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.

Veteran all-rounder Mohammad Nabi played a crucial role in guiding Afghanistan to a six-wicket victory over a newly revamped Pakistan team in the T20I.

This became Afghanistan’s first win in four Twenty20 internationals against Pakistan.

Nabi took 2-12 and was ably assisted by Mujeeb Ur Rahman (2-9) and pacer Fazalhaq Farooqi (2-13) to restrict Pakistan to 92-9 after they won the toss and batted at Sharjah Stadium.

Nabi then kept his cool with a cautious run-a-ball 38 not out and added 53 for the unbroken fifth wicket with Najibullah Zadran (17 not out) to help Afghanistan overhaul the target in 17.5 overs.

The 24-year-old Khan, who is leading the Green Shirts for the first time in an international match, admitted that the team did not play well against Afghanistan.

This is the first bilateral series between the two countries with the remaining matches also in Sharjah on Sunday and Monday.

On the other hand, Afghanistan captain Rashid Khan said victory would have been difficult for them had Pakistan scored 120 runs in the match.

“[We] always come close to winning against Pakistan and lose, but this time we gained victory,” Rashid said.

He shared his wish to win the series against the Shadab-led team.

— Additional input from AFP

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