February 10, 2010

Afghanistan

A thrilling start

George Binoy

Hamid Hassan

What a way to start the tournament! To win your opening game of the event is always important but to beat the number one Associate team who played in the Super Eights at the last ICC World Twenty20 is an amazing feeling.

Even though we beat Ireland at the World Cup Qualifier last year and in the ICC Intercontinental Cup last month, I always knew it was going to be a tough game, so to come out on top is a real boost for the team.

The support we received from the Afghanistan supporters was fantastic in the stadium. They made a lot of noise playing the drums. It was a great atmosphere to play in front of and really helped us gain our momentum once we got William Porterfield out. I would also to like to thank everybody who has been sending us messages from back in Afghanistan – the support we get from you all is incredible.

I was quite pleased with the way that I bowled and it was great to be involved in the final two wickets – the first was a run out when the ball was hit straight back to me and I managed to get a direct hit on the stumps and then the second one was cleaned bowled to finish the match.

I am very proud of my team and to represent my country. To show this to everybody I had small Afghanistan flags on my face. At the ACC Twenty20 in Dubai last year I only had one flag on my face, but for the Twenty20 Qualifier I thought it was important to have two flags – one on each cheek. Maybe it helped bring us luck!

We know that Scotland will be a tough match on Wednesday and even though we beat them twice last year at the World Cup Qualifier, there have been enough surprise results on the opening day of this event to remind us in Twenty20 anything can happen.

RELATED LINKS

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: George Binoy

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by wadood on (February 11, 2010, 11:15 GMT)

congratsc2 all afghans for their team,i hope 2 c u r team coming up and playing all major cricket tournaments,although im a pathan from pakista but wish u gud luk

Posted by Saif Shybu Khan on (February 11, 2010, 10:35 GMT)

First of all, Congratulation to all Afghanistan and the Afghanistan Cricket Team for their win. I as Indian and a supporter of Afghanistan would like to wish you all the best for future success. I'm sure i'll see Afghanistan in a future World Cup, and it could be the next World Cup. All Afghanistan supporters can take Sri Lanka as an example and draw inspiration from their succcess.

All the best. Khuda Hafiz.

Posted by Mujeeb Rahman on (February 11, 2010, 6:18 GMT)

Wow! Afghan team has showed some talent. Insha Allah, the day is not far when our Afghan team will be competing amongst the top International teams in the world.

Hamid Hassan, Mohammad Nabi, Nauroz Mangal and all Afghan players are Natrual gifted players. With less resouces, no ground facilities, and less internatinoal exposure, the Afghan Team is performing above expectations.

All Afghans should pray, from the bottom of their heart, for Afghan Team to qualify to the T20 World Cup. Even, if they don't beat teams at T20 World Cup, still it will be a big big acheivement for them to compete with teams which have the experience, resources, financial support and other advantages over Afghanistan.

I wish my Afghan Team all the best. Our prayers are with them, and by the help of Al-Mighty, we will qualify to the T20 World Cup.

Mujeeb Rahman, From Kandahar

Posted by Jamal Khan on (February 11, 2010, 5:53 GMT)

Well done Afghan National Cricket team. Congratulation and Keep wining, especially in upcoming Matches. We want our team in coming T20 World Cup. The Kabul express Mr. Hamid Hassan Weldon and “Boom Boom” Mohammad Nabi we want more sixes in future too. What a leadership Nawroz Mangal.

Posted by Don on (February 10, 2010, 23:28 GMT)

Even Australian cricket fans applaud Afghanistan's brilliant results (in so short a time). Good news stories from Afghanistan are so welcome. Power on to the Caribbean!

Posted by Ali on (February 10, 2010, 17:25 GMT)

Mubarak to all.I hope Afghanistan and Kenya should progress to T20 world cup and Afghanistan should knock out USA in next match in style. IT would be a revenge game for there occupation on our homeland. Keep performing my superb players.

Posted by Smith on (February 10, 2010, 17:22 GMT)

Congrats Afghan for the great effort.Looks like most of your fans are from Pakistan, UAE and USA other then Afghanistan itself.Wish you good luck for super four.

Posted by Omid on (February 10, 2010, 13:41 GMT)

Thanks Kunal for your opinion about Afghan cricket team i don't care if someone say that Afghan cricket team will be thrash be bigger team our team just started couple years ago and up to now they did a great job even if they didn't qualify for world cup it is a big achievement for all afghans around the world and also beat Ireland or Scotland is not a easy job but our team did because they are playing for their people. thanks

Posted by Andrew M on (February 10, 2010, 13:37 GMT)

Well done to Afghanistan. An inspiration to all Associate nations [and below]. In a recent presentation to our governemntal sports body - in an attempt to win some government support for the development of cricket locally - we used Afghanistans progress as a Case Study. The sports body were clearly impressed and although there are clear differences between our cricketing situatiuon now and Afghanistans situations 15 years it does give us hope. In 15 years time we hope it will be us you are hearing from us...

Posted by sharaf katawazi on (February 10, 2010, 13:37 GMT)

kunal kothari we will and we should keep our hopes high just bcz that our team is doing great job and keep on wining matches.which is great to keep hopes high.although there is no facilities in afghanistan but we are preparing ourseves in peshawer and playing cricket with alots of hopes and there is a alot of talent for afghanistan in peshawer.all afghans are playing in peshawer.and preparing ourselves for future afghanistan cricket team.there are alot of talented players for back up.first iam very good cricketer i can well and inshallah will be part of afghan team in future.we have alot high hopes and inshallah will compet any team.

Comments have now been closed for this article

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

George Binoy
Assistant Editor After a major in Economics and nine months in a financial research firm, George realised that equity, capital and the like were not for him. He decided that he wanted to be one of those lucky few who did what they love at work. Alas, his prodigious talent was never spotted and he had to reconcile himself to the fact that he would never earn his money playing cricket for his country, state or even district. He jumped at the opportunity to work for ESPNcricinfo and is now confident of mastering the art of office cricket

All articles by this writer