Mohammad Nabi named Afghanistan captain
Mohammad Nabi, the Afghanistan allrounder, will lead the side in the ICC Intercontinental Cup in the UAE, after Nawroz Mangal was stripped of the captaincy following his dismal show in the limited-over series in Pakistan last month. Mangal had led the side for more than four years.
Afghanistan, in the recent tour of Pakistan, failed to make an impact under Mangal, losing the limited-over series against the Pakistan 'A' team and various regional sides. Mangal, however, was retained in the 18-man squad named ahead of the international fixtures against Scotland in UAE, with wicketkeeper batsman Mohammad Shahzad named as vice-captain.
Nabi, 28, who skipped the Pakistan tour to play in the Bangladesh Premier League, was the top wicket-taker for Sylhet Royals, taking 18 wickets in 14 matches at 19.27. This is not the first time Nabi has been handed the captaincy, as he was earlier named captain for the Asian Games in 2010 where Afghanistan finished runners-up, losing to Bangladesh in the final.
They will head to the UAE to play two Twenty20 internationals against Scotland at Sharjah, starting March 3, followed by two ODIs in the ICC World Cricket League Championship. From March 12, the team will play a first-class match against the same opponents in the sixth edition of the ICC Intercontinental Cup, which is to be held in Abu Dhabi.
Squad: Mohammad Nabi (capt), Mohammad Shahzad (vice-capt & wk), Karim Sadiq, Nawroz Mangal, Javed Ahmadi, Mohibullah Paak, Samiullah Shenwari, Gulbodin Naib, Hamza Hotak, Dawlat Zadran, Izatullah Dawlatzai, Aftab Alam, Mirwais Ashraf, Afsar Zazai, Shabir Noori, Shapoor Zadran, Hamid Hassan and Asghar Stanikzai
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent