Ireland will have to come out all guns blazing against Afghanistan in the 5th and final ODI at the Civil Service Cricket Club in Belfast on Tuesday. The reason being Afghanistan are leading the series 2-1 and this is Ireland's final chance to square the series.
The first ODI was washed due to rain. Afghanistan won the second ODI quite comfortably. But Ireland bounced back strongly in the third ODI, which they won by 75 runs. Afghanistan, however, handed a defeat to Ireland in the fourth ODI to take the lead in the series.
Mohammad Shahzad has been outstanding for Afghanistan in this series. He has continued with his form from the last series against Scotland. Shahzad has already scored 169 runs in three matches and will be looking to add to the number. Shahzad's form will be key for Afghanistan in the final one-dayer.
Meanwhile, for Ireland, Kevin O'Brien has been one of the best performers in this series, both with bat and ball. His all-round skills earned Ireland a victory in the third ODI. O'Brien has managed to score 144 runs in three matches and he also added seven scalps to his name. These seven wickets came in the second and third ODIs as he did not get his name in the wickets column in the fourth one-day international.
Ireland bowlers have bowled quite well in this series as they have not let Afghanistan reach the 300-run-mark. But Afghanistan bowlers have done much better to restrict Ireland in the two matches that they have won.
The weather forecast suggest that it is going to be mostly sunny with chances of occasional showers.
Squads: Ireland: William Porterfield (C), Ed Joyce, Peter Chase, Tyrone Kane, Andy McBrine, Barry McCarthy, Tim Murtagh, Kevin O'Brien, Stuart Poynter (wk), Paul Stirling, Sean Terry, Gary Wilson, George Dockrell, John Anderson.
Afghanistan: Samiullah Shenwari, Najibullah Zadran, Rashid Khan, Mirwais Ashraf, Gulbadin Naib, Dawlat Zadran, Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Noor Ali Zadran, Javed Ahmadi, Asghar Stanikzai (C), Rahmat Shah, Mohammad Nabi, Hamid Hassan, Shapoor Zadran, Amir Hamza, Yamin Ahmadzai.
Where to watch live:
The fifth ODI Ireland vs Afghanistan is scheduled to start from 10:45 a.m. local time (3:15 pm IST, 5:45 am EST) start. Unfortunately, there will be no live TV coverage of this match in India.
No channels will broadcast Ireland vs Afghanistan 5th ODI in UK or Ireland as well.
Afghan TV will telecast the game live in Afghanistan. For the live streaming option click Afghan Play.
For live updates, go to Cricket Ireland's website.