October 10, 2008

Afghanistan

Getting closer to a dream

Andrew McGlashan

Hamid Hassan, Afghanistan’s fast bowler, on taking a step nearer to the 2011 World Cup.

It would be the best moment of my life if I get to play at the World Cup and I am so happy I have taken a step closer to realising that dream today.

There was a lot of pressure on us ahead of the game against Italy, as we knew that if we lost the game we wouldn’t get promoted from Division 4. We played extremely well today and I am proud of the team and very grateful to all the help and support that our coach Kabir Khan has provided us.

My role in the Afghanistan team at this tournament is to come on after the opening bowlers have finished their spell.

I quite like the fact teams think that they have faced all the Afghanistan fast bowlers and then I come on to bowl even faster.

I like bowling with the new ball but in this team I try and use the old ball to my advantage and focus on bowling an excellent line and length. I try to bowl full and straight so I pick up most of my wickets by bowling people or getting them out leg before wicket.

My yorker has worked really well in this tournament and I think that is why I have taken some many wickets in Tanzania.

My cricket idol is Andrew Flintoff – I think he is a world-class player. I was lucky enough to be a net bowler for England at Lord’s back in 2006, when I was with the MCC, and when Flintoff found out that I was from Afghanistan he gave me his England shirt which I often wear and I have it with me in Tanzania. He said that I was a very good bowler and told me to work hard on my game.

I really enjoyed having the opportunity to bowl against the likes of Kevin Pietersen and Michael Vaughan and I even managed to dismiss Ian Bell and Marcus Trescothick in the nets which made me feel very proud.

After this tournament, we will go back to Afghanistan and have some rest and then probably have a training camp for two or three months to get ready for Argentina.

I would love to have the opportunity to go and play cricket in some other countries – it would be fantastic to play county cricket or the Indian Premier League. My dream would be to play for Lancashire with Flintoff.

I hope that we can finish a wonderful week in Tanzania by winning the final against Hong Kong who is a very strong team.

When we won the World Cricket League Division 5 in Jersey there were some great celebrations when we arrived back in Kabul and people came to greet us at the airport. It would be great if we can repeat those scenes by winning the tournament here as well.

I know from speaking to my family and friends back in Afghanistan that all of the people at home are very happy that we have got promoted – they will be even happier if we add another trophy to our collection.

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Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by Qaseer khan on (December 17, 2008, 10:16 GMT)

it is good time for afghanistan cricket team inshahahllah Afghanistan cricket team will win agian so i am happy thanks alot brothers

Posted by dr Gulkhan on (October 16, 2008, 19:55 GMT)

Afghanistan already participates in pakistans domestic competion (district level)

Posted by Tom on (October 16, 2008, 9:23 GMT)

Congratulatıons Afghanıstan, ım sure you can take ıt to the next level and wın dıvısıon 3. As we all know momentum ıs so ınportant ın crıcket and you have ıt all behınd you so you wıll be full of confıdence and fear nobody. You can really do somethıng ıncredıble and make mıllıons of people ın the world happy.

Posted by Patrick on (October 15, 2008, 6:07 GMT)

Congratulations to Afghanistan team. It will be good to see if the BCCI or PCB give Chances for teams like afghanistan, nepal to feature in their domestic competitions. That is the way by which you can promote cricket to more areas with competitiveness rather than playing them only in world cups or asia cups.

Posted by Kiyan on (October 12, 2008, 12:41 GMT)

Long Live Afghanistan and Afghan Nation! We'll reach the WC 2011 in India hopefully.

Posted by Angar on (October 11, 2008, 20:01 GMT)

Hamid hasan thanx budy great job done... hope u all guys work together as a team... not personal game but a team for the country which we love the most... Hassan hope you & Nabi would get chance in IPL & i m sure u guys would do soon if qualified for world cup & showed to the world ur talent... & hope u guys then contribute to ur country team financially as well...we all Afghans are proud of u...You r our chapions... May Allah give u all guys bright future... try to work on ur fittness... An Afghan student in India Once Hamid Hassan's schoolmate with tamim

Posted by amin zamani on (October 11, 2008, 17:36 GMT)

I would like to congratulate the whole afghan team oon winning this division. This shows the world that afghans are mad about cricket. If they play with a bit more patience and read the game better, I am sure they will earn themselves a permanent place among the A-nations. The government of Afghanistan and ICC should do more to encourage the players and design programs and build stadiums in afghanistan.

Posted by Wali Jalal on (October 11, 2008, 17:05 GMT)

I am really proud of all my afghan players for playing a really wonderful Cricket. Now you guys are getting more closer to the world cup, I know how hard it is for you guys with such limited resources in a war torne country, and your success, hardword and dedication is admirable.

We love you all here in Australia and are with you.

Posted by Mohammad sadiq Kakar on (October 11, 2008, 15:43 GMT)

congratulations Every body !!!!!!!!!!!!!

afghanistan nationational cricket team won the final of Division 4 either by 57 runs V strong team of hong kong

I wish to see our sweet team playing in world cup 2011 toooooooooooooooooo

Love you afghanistan

Best regards Mohammad Sadiq Kakar

From Mazar-e-Sharif Afghanistan

Contact numbers +93 786 278 678 and +93 708 569 806

Posted by Muzher Sharif on (October 11, 2008, 12:40 GMT)

Insha'Allah you and the boys will make it to the World Cup and bring some joy to Afghanistan.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Andrew McGlashan
Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.

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