Afghanistan edged Zimbabwe by 12 runs in the first one-day international on Thursday but only after heavy rain had washed away home hopes.
After making 215 batting first, Afghanistan claimed victory on the Duckworth-Lewis method when Ryan Burl's dismissal left Zimbabwe on 99 for 4.
Had Burl not fallen just two balls before the rain intervened, the African side would have been ahead of the required rate under the rain rules.
Earlier Afghanistan skipper Asghar Stanikzai made an even 50, his seventh ODI half-century, to help his team post a competitive score.
In reply, a 55-run fourth-wicket partnership between Burl and Craig Ervine, who made an undefeated 38, looked to have steadied the Zimbabwe innings before the early finish.
The second match in the five-game series will take place in Harare on Sunday.