AT Monitoring Desk
KABUL: The Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) recently shocked the cricketing world by replacing captain Asghar Afghan in all three formats of the game internationally with just around 2 months to go for the marquee ICC World Cup 2019. Gulbadin Naib was handed the ODI captaincy of the team and will lead Afghanistan in the World Cup in England and Wales. Rahisd Khan and Rahmat Shah got the T20I and Test captaincy.
Asghar Afghan is the most successful captains of Afghanistan team and has led them making it potentially one of the biggest giant-killers in international cricket. Afghan, 31, had led the team in their first ever World Cup appearance in 2015 edition and earned their first win over Scotland in the tournament.
Afghan, who changed his name from Stanikzai, had led Afghanistan in 56 ODIs, 46 T20 internationals and their first two Tests and recently registered a historic first Test win over Ireland in Dehradun. Asghar has led the team to 33 ODI victories and also led the team to ICC World Cup 2019 qualifiers win, which enabled them to play in the upcoming quadrennial event in England and Wales.
Recently, Asghar Afghan, who has been named in Afghanistan’s 23-man preliminary squad for the ICC World Cup and is currently training in South Africa, met the Afghanistan Cricket Board chairman Azizullah Fazli. This was the first time the two parties met after Afghan was sacked as the captain of the national team.
Afghanistan Cricket Board’s official Twitter account posted a picture of the two meeting and hugging with the caption, “ACB Chairman @AzizullahFazli met former captain Asghar Afghan as both discussed the recent changes in team leadership. Afghan remarked that he will continue to strive for the team’s success and pride of the country. He will soon join the national training camp in South Africa.”
Afghan’s sacking as captain just months before the World Cup met with severe criticism from all quarters and even from Afghanistani players Rashid Khan and former captain Mohammad Nabi who felt that the change in leadership can affect their performance in the World Cup.