Afghanistan news September 30, 2011

High hopes for Afghanistan's young talent

ESPNcricinfo staff

Afghanistan have targeted a place at the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka next year, and batsman Mohammad Nabi believes the blooding of new talent during Pakistan's domestic Twenty20 tournament stands the team in good stead.

"We are preparing for the World Twenty20 qualifiers next year and for a series of matches in the United Arab Emirates, so it was very good to come here and play," said Nabi, who was stand-in captain at the Faysal Bank T20 cup, with Regular captain Nawroz Mangal and several senior players having missed the trip in order to prepare for next month's matches in the UAE.

"We brought some youngsters here while the seniors were in the UAE, so we have a good back-up and youngsters get the chance to learn something, and I am happy that they learnt a lot," said Nabi.

Nabi added that he hoped new coach Aftab Habib would continue the progress set in motion by former coach Rashid Latif. "We learnt a lot from Rashid Latif and now we have former England player Habib as coach, so we hope he carries on the good work," said Nabi.

In order for Afghanistan to make a second appearance at the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka next September, they will have to finish in the top two in the World Twenty20 qualifiers scheduled in the UAE from March 13-24, 2012.