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Afghanistan sign up for Pakistan support

Umar Farooq

March 22, 2013

Comments: 26 | Text size: A | A

Afghanistan Cricket Board and PCB sign a Memorandum of Understanding, Lahore, March 22, 2013
Afghanistan Cricket Board CEO Noor Muhammad with his Pakistani counterpart Subhan Ahmed © PCB

Afghanistan have received a boost after a two-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for the development of Afghanistan cricket ahead of the 2015 World Cup.

The PCB will provide technical and professional support, including game-education programmes, coaching courses, skill and performance analysis, and basic umpiring and curator courses. High performance camps for emerging players will also be organised. The PCB-regulated National Cricket Academy (NCA) will help in improving technical, tactical, mental and physical skills, and will host lectures on doping, anti-corruption and various codes of conduct. The finance for the project will be decided later, with the NCA-related activities likely to be subsidised.

The Sharjah Cricket Stadium has served as Afghanistan's base since 2010, after they were forced to shift out of their country due to lack of infrastructure. But Pakistan's cricketing history, expertise and the opportunities for exposure to regular competitive cricket will polish their cricketers more than in the UAE, and this has brought ACB to accept Pakistan's helping hand.

"The PCB has always supported and helped the ACB with regards to cricket development there since the 1990s," PCB chief operating officer, Subhan Ahmad, said. "With the PCB's continued support, Afghanistan has the potential to go places. This would be good not just in terms of spreading the game in Afghanistan but promoting peace and harmony there by bringing the people closer."

Afghanistan became a member of the ICC in 2001 and qualified for World Cricket League (WCL) Division One in 2009 to attain one-day international status. They recently made their third trip to Pakistan in the last two years, having lost a one-day series 3-0 to a second-string Pakistan side in May 2011. They followed this up by participating in a domestic Twenty20 competition in Karachi.

Noor Muhammad, ACB CEO, acknowledged PCB's support. "The MoU that we have just signed shall take Afghanistan's cricket development on a fast track," he said. "Our cricketers, coaches and umpires shall be able to make use of PCB's excellent facilities and various education programmes. Our boys will get the opportunity to hone their skills in high-calibre competitions.

"I am indeed obliged to the PCB for this kind and voluminous support," Noor said. "Actually it is Pakistan's support that has seen Afghanistan cricket make rapid strides among affiliate nations, taking it to the verge of an enhanced status to associate member."

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent

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Posted by   on (March 25, 2013, 21:56 GMT)

Well it is a good idea on paper however how much do Afghanistan need to learn anyway. I mean Afghanistan and Ireland are the two top associate nations in cricket isn't about time they step them up to the test status level or have them playing for ODI against the established nations. Playing one nation per year is not good enough. The test teams should play the top associates at least one each in a year. More tests teams will be better for cricket as a whole.

Posted by JavedKhanAfridi on (March 24, 2013, 11:50 GMT)

This is good step by PCB and ACB but they should arrange ODI and T20 between the two teams as soon as possible. This would help Afghanistan team a lot. Afghanistan has so much talent, i am sure they would be top side of the world within 5 to 10 years.

Posted by   on (March 24, 2013, 6:31 GMT)

I am very Glad to heard about this news which Pakistan is supporting ACB .

Posted by   on (March 24, 2013, 5:04 GMT)

This is a great news and a very appreciable step from Pakistan toward supporting Afghanistan. Thanks PCB. We want other Asian countries ( Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh) as well to support Afghanistan cricket. So far we only have seen a great support from Pakistan. We can't ignore Bangladesh's support as well for inclusion of Afghan players in BPL. However, unfortunately the greatest Indian country India has so far shown no committed support to Afghanistan. The same with Sri Lanka. They should at least have a look to Western countries like England the way it supports Associate countries (Scots, Ireland and Holland). plz don't ignore.......

Posted by CarnivalOfSorts on (March 24, 2013, 1:57 GMT)

Excellent to hear, Pakistan have been very supporting of Associate cricket recently, coming to Ireland 2 years ago and again this summer for 2 matches each, not just a once off. Delighted to know one full member supports us...

Posted by borhans on (March 23, 2013, 13:28 GMT)

Hold your thoughts boys to get test status they need to have a stable economy ,investment in cricket ,fields & also their law & order situation have to be more secured from where they can show long term player supply ..Afghanistan may need more opportunity to play on pakistan league hope to keep up good performance to play occasionally on T20 /odi world cup

Posted by   on (March 23, 2013, 8:04 GMT)

That's great ! If PCB continues to help ACB , sooner or later Afghanistan Cricket Team will get test status In sha Allah .Would be great if Wasim Akram or Waqar Younus becomes head coach of Afghanistan .

Posted by   on (March 23, 2013, 8:01 GMT)

very good news and so pleasuring. i hope Pakistan and Afghanistan start helping each others in all aspects of life. pakistan is our neighbor country with whom we need to live peacefully and in love. if we started helping each others as we are doing in cricket we will be a power together in the world but i dont know why our leaders dont understand this. i wish one day pakistan and afghanista become a real brother who always support each other in every field of life. thnx pakistan and wish both countries all the best. i am from Afghanistan but it really hurt me whenver i see pakistan losing a match because i love pakistan as much as i love Afghanistan.

Posted by Salobalay on (March 23, 2013, 6:03 GMT)

@ Ahmad Ramin Samandar: Really?! This is what you have to say after the support PCB shows? I hope Afghanistan grabs this opportunity and learns as much as possible rather than returning quickly.

Posted by   on (March 23, 2013, 6:01 GMT)

Afghans will soon move ahead from teams like Holland, Ireland and even Zimbabwe

Posted by Azooz-Afgfan on (March 23, 2013, 4:21 GMT)

Good Move,but beside helping them in batting,coaching and umpiring skills,Afghanistan badly need matches with Pakistan National team which is the only way they can improve playing plenty of ODI's with Full members.

Posted by   on (March 23, 2013, 3:51 GMT)

This is really a good news for Afghan cricket and a wounderful approach by PCB. It is showing the support of being a good neighore. Now I am pretty sure that Afghan cricket team will rock and shake the next 2015 World cup as they will enjoy from this apportunity till then. One thing for the ICC, as Afghan cricket team keeps beating these associates teams but still they are not being given the status of an associate team, this not fair. So please ICC, open your Eyes and do your responsibilty. They really deserve to grant the status of an associate, not being affiliate. Thanks once again PCB for this great help.

Posted by   on (March 23, 2013, 2:16 GMT)

emerging teams need this kind of support

Posted by WellOfcours on (March 23, 2013, 1:57 GMT)

This is a breathtaking step from PCB. I really appreciate this brilliant gesture and hope Afghanistan Cricket Board makes most of it. There is no doubt in the talent Afghanistan posses; however there are few areas which they can work on, like temperament and composure. Their participation in T20 competition in Karachi was a big positive and eye pleasing to watch and the (MoU) seems like something what they needed. It's a relief Afghan cricket is heading in the right direction. I feel Afghan will produce world class pace bowlers in near future.

Posted by   on (March 23, 2013, 1:32 GMT)

This is not great news... Afghanistan learning from Pakistan to not cheat, bat, win matches.... Pakistan can't bad if their portion of Dal depends on it. Have you seen Afghanistan field; they put their heart to it unlike Pakistan who seems to be scared of the cricket ball ... I hope Afghanistan go there learn how to ball reverse swing and enjoy some chicken karaghi and come back.... peace

Posted by Meety on (March 22, 2013, 22:44 GMT)

This is BRILLIANT! GREAT work Pakistan. There is a lot of mutual benefits these two countries can provide, particularly whilst Pakistan has no home Internationals. Pleased that there is SOME common sense in the cricket world!

Posted by AK47_pk on (March 22, 2013, 22:42 GMT)

Aghanistan is most talented cricketing nation coming up. Pcb shud do all in its power to bring afghans to top level. They are way ahead of other upcoming nations especially in fast bowling nd hard hitting

Posted by Evilpengwinz on (March 22, 2013, 22:37 GMT)

Too many acronyms. My head hurts.

Posted by   on (March 22, 2013, 22:18 GMT)

Will be great to see the Afghan National team in Pakistan against its national team. Afghans are not afraid of playing in any city of Pakistan.Thanks Pakistan.

Posted by obaidulah on (March 22, 2013, 20:35 GMT)

great news for Afghanistan they should hire a batting couch which is very important for us

Posted by   on (March 22, 2013, 20:08 GMT)

This is fantastic news, wonderful gesture from PCB, BCCI can earn much respect my doing something like this. I am from Canada and went to the NCA in Bangalore in 2007 as an under 19 prospect, and I can tell you, it really helps when you go train with full members. It opens yours eyes and every day you learn something new.

Posted by   on (March 22, 2013, 19:53 GMT)

this is pretty good now, both the nations should always be close to each other. I am an Afghan and would like to see Afghan cricket hit the heights with the help of Pakistan because they are the best in the world. Once Afghans stands on their feet they will be the first team to got and visit and play full international cricket series in Pakistan starting from Peshawar to any city which can host the international cricket.

Posted by avmd on (March 22, 2013, 19:46 GMT)

It makes a lot of sense, a great gesture by PCB. Afghans are physically tough and hard working people and I'm sure with the help like this Afghan team will make a rapid progress. I'm sure in 6-7 years, when their own country will be more stable, they will have a good infrastructure and will be higher ranked than Bangladesh and Zimbabwe.

Posted by Tetrapole on (March 22, 2013, 19:25 GMT)

Pakistan has always helped cricketing nations get to their feet. Ironic that when pak needs help no one is lending a hand.

Posted by Lahori92 on (March 22, 2013, 19:13 GMT)

PCB should allow Afghanistan to participate in the Quade-Azam trophy and the 50 over game, i know the afghani's took part in t20, PCB should go all the to help our neighbours to become a better and stronger team where they can compete with other test playing nations on a equal footing.

Posted by   on (March 22, 2013, 18:57 GMT)

Well done Pakistan.Really More supportive Test Nation for affiliated & associated country that's why I love Pakistan..All the best AFG...

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