ICC World Cup Qualifiers 2009 March 30, 2009

Afghanistan forced to withdraw batsman

Cricinfo staff

Afghanistan have withdrawn Rafatullah Mohmand from their squad for the ICC World Cup Qualifiers after deciding he was not eligible to play for them.

"The Afghanistan Cricket Board did not provide the necessary eligibility documentation required for the player to represent Afghanistan," ICC media manager and communication officer James Fitzgerald said, explaining that documentation faxed by the board was illegible. "We asked for better copies to be e-mailed to us but at that stage the ACB decided to withdraw the player."

ACB vice-president Allahdad Noori said Momand was withdrawn because of ICC rules. "ICC rules demand that a player must have played domestic cricket for four years in the country he wants to represent internationally," Noori told AFP, "so Mohmand must play in Afghanistan for four years to be eligible."

Mohmand, 32, had played 117 first-class matches in Pakistan before he was invited to represent Afghanistan earlier this month. "I was offered the chance to play for Afghanistan but rules did not allow it and I am disappointed," Mohmand said. "I will think it over in the next few days - whether to wait and become eligible to play for Afghanistan or continue playing in Pakistan."