19 September 2020

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Friday February 15, 2019
Kabul (BNA) In fewer than 20 years, cricket in Afghanistan has gone from being an ordinary sport to holding a special place in the hearts and minds of many people.
Afghanistan is currently preparing to take part in its second 50-over World Cup, set to take place in the UK from June, a remarkable achievement given that many of the players learned how to play the popular sport in barren refugee camps.
“In 2018, we beat Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, we drew with India and we got full membership to the ICC,” says Azizullah Fazli, Chairman of Afghan Cricket Board. "These are amazing achievements for the Afghan nation. We are playing now on grounds where they had never heard of Afghanistan before," he added.
The sport was imported by Afghan refugees who had lived in Pakistan in the 1990s after fleeing the Soviet invasion.
A ban by the Taliban on sport, including cricket and football, meant that many did not practise their favourite sport for fear of reprisals.
That came to an end in 2002 after the Taliban lifted the ban on cricket, making it the only sport approved by the armed group.
The Afghan Cricket Board now has five stadia in the country and a flourishing youth policy.
Assadullah Khan, a former national team player, credits the sport's success to its ability to bridge social and political differences in a deeply-divided country still reeling from years of war.
"We started cricket in Taliban time. They love cricket and they also showed good support for cricket ... So now, that is why we are here."


Wednesday February 13, 2019

Kabul (BNA) Afghanistan spin-bowling sensation Mujeeb Ur Rahman has signed up to play for county side Middlesex in their T20 campaign this season.
The 17-year-old has picked up 54 wickets in all formats since making his debut at the age of 16. He will be hoping to have the same impact as compatriot Rashid Khan at Sussex last year.
Rahman has enjoyed a successful Big Bash campaign with Brisbane Heat, picking up 12 wickets including best figures of 3-16.
“Middlesex Cricket is today delighted to announce the signing of Mujeeb Ur Rahman for this season’s Blast campaign,” the county said in a statement.
“The 17-year-old spinner becomes head coach Stuart Law’s first signing of the summer and will be available for the entire Blast campaign. He will join up with the Middlesex squad in early July to prepare for the tournament ahead.”
“It is with great pleasure to say that Mujeeb has agreed to play for Middlesex in the Blast,” said Law. “His unique style of spin has proven to be difficult to play against and his record is outstanding in this format.”

Friday February 8, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Afghan officials cannot be relied on to properly investigate reports of sexual abuse of members of the national women’s soccer team, their head coach said on Thursday, as she urged governing body FIFA to bring in new measures to protect victims.
Former U.S. international Kelly Lindsey spoke out after a panel laid out a series of recommendations aimed at protecting victims and cracking down on those found to have committed wrongdoing in the wake of the scandal.
“The women who raised their voices have taken an immense amount of pressure on their shoulders because it is life or death for them and their families,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in a telephone interview from Hong Kong.
“I think FIFA really needs to stand up here — they are the governing body of football and if they allow this to happen in their culture then it’s easy for it to be pushed under the rug.”
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani ordered an investigation in December after allegations that some players had been molested by officials from the country’s soccer federation.
The Afghan Football Federation called the accusations “groundless” and said it would cooperate with any investigation. Its head and five other officials have been suspended.
A FIFA spokesman said the world football federation had “zero tolerance” for human rights violations and was already involved in addressing the Afghan abuse allegations.
This included measures to investigate the reports and to protect those who had spoken out, he said.
A panel led by former FIFA vice president Prince Ali Bin Al-Hussein of Jordan in London on Tuesday urged Afghan officials to fully investigate all claims of criminal wrongdoing and offer protection for players and whistleblowers.
“The culture in football needs urgent reform,” said Prince Ali in a statement.
Panel members said new contracts that bar Afghan women’s team members from speaking about the team and enforce wearing the hijab should be scrapped.
FIFA, the world football federation, was also urged to take action to prevent future abuse including establishing clear whistleblowing processes within the sport, and founding a fully independent body to investigate player sexual assault cases.
Member organizations found to be non-compliant should suffer sanctions such as financial penalties, suspension and expulsion, they added.
“It’s important this is looked at seriously and taken care of, because Afghanistan in my opinion is not the only place this is happening,” Lindsey said.
Afghanistan ranks as one of the most dangerous countries for women, and allegations of sexual contact outside marriage can have deadly consequences.
Married victims of sexual harassment are often extremely reluctant to come forward for fear that they will be accused of adultery.


Friday February 8, 2019
Kabul (BNA) In latest news, Afghanistan Cricket Board unveiled the team’s squads for full-fledged series against Ireland, which is scheduled to kick off in India later this month. There is a lot of cricket to be played between these 2 teams as both are ready for one heck of a blast. The series involves 3 T20Is, 5 ODIs and 1 Test. It will start on February 21 and will come to a close on 19th March with all the matches to be organised in Dehradun itself. Afghan cricket officials were of the opinion that the upcoming series will be crucial for Afghan players as they are geared up for the World Cup which will start in May. For your information, Afghanistan and Ireland became full members of the ICC in 2017. The nations already spiced it up in their debut Tests and the next Test will be their second.
Afghanistan Team Squads
T20 Squad:
Asghar Afghan (skipper), Usman Ghani, Najeeb Tarakai, Hazratullah Zazai, Samihullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Shafiqullah Shafaq, Rashid Khan, Najibullah Zadran, Karim Janat, Farid Ahmad Malik, Sayed Ahmad Shirzad, Ziaur Rahman Sharifi, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Zahir Khan, Sharafudin Ashraf
ODI Squad:
Asghar Afghan (skipper), Mohammad Shahzad, Noor Ali Zadran, Javid Ahmadi, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Samiullah Shenwari, Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Ikram Alikhail, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Rashid Khan, Karim Janat, Gulbadin Naib, Aftab Alam, Dawlat Zadran, Zahir Khan, Farid Ahmad Malik, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Shapoor Zadran, Sayed Ahmad Shirzad
Test Squad:
Asghar Afghan (skipper), Shahzad Mohammadi, Ihsanullah Janat, Javed Ahmadi, Rahmat Shah, Nasir Jamal, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Ikram Alikhail, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Wafadar Momand, Yamin Ahmadzai, Sharafudin Ashraf, Waqar Salamkhail
21 February – 1st T20I
23 February – 2nd T20I
24 February – 3rd T20I
28 February – 1st ODI
2 March – 2nd ODI
5 March – 3rd ODI
8 March – 4th ODI
10 March – 5th ODI
15–19 March – Test Match