The Afghan national cricket team on Tuesday beat Oman in the Asian T20 championship by 44 runs, its first match for the World Cup 2015 qualifiers.

Afghanistan started the match with strong a batting lineup, setting the run target for Oman at 150. Karim Sadeq proved the strongest batsman in the match, putting 46 runs on the board for the Afghans.

However Oman was out of overs by with only 106 runs on the board. The Gulf nation struggled at the start of its batting as Afghan skipper Mohammad Nabi Esakhel bowled four out in four overs. Esakhel was named man of the match.

Afghanistan will next face Bahrain in the T20 championship on Thursday.

The Asian T20 which is hosted by Nepal this year has 10 teams competing. The top two teams will head to the 2015 World Cup.

The Afghan team playing in Nepal includes Mohammad Nabi Esakhel, Karim Sadiq, Shapoor Zadran, Nasim Briz, Najibullah Zadran, Fazal Niazi, Gulbodin Naib, Samiullah Shinwari, Shafiqullah Shafaq, Mohammad Nasim, Mohammad Sami Agha, Aftab Alam, and Hamza Hotak.

The cricket coach Mohammad Nabi Esakhel said yesterday that the players were in good form and were ready for the Asian T20.

The team has won three Asian T20 championships – in 2007 (equal with Oman), 2009 and 2011.