Mohammad Asghar Afghan
December 26, 1987, Kabul, Afghanistan
Also Known As
Asghar Salamkhail, Asghar Stanikzai
Right hand Bat
Right arm Medium fast
Middle order Batter
Arguably a better captain than a batter, Asghar Afghan, formerly Asghar Stanikzai, had a somewhat tuk-tuk-boom approach to batting, his determined presence at the crease in the middle order occasionally punctuated with flashes of aggressive strokeplay. In Afghanistan's early forays into the top level of the international game his approach, and ability to occupy the crease, were assets in the contrast they offered to many of his team-mates in the top order, who seemed to play a shot a ball.
He was with Afghanistan at their first major global tournament, the World T20 in 2010, and also played a vital batting role in their first win over a Test-playing nation, Bangladesh, in an ODI in March 2014. The following year he was named captain of Afghanistan, and would go on to lead the side in 59 ODIs. His leadership was instrumental in establishing the side as a serious T20 contender -they won 42 of the 52 T20Is they played under him.
He also captained the side in their inaugural Test, against India in 2018, and led Afghanistan to their first-ever Test win in only their second Test, against Ireland in 2019. In 2021 he recorded a career-best 164 in a fourth wicket stand of 307 with Hashmatullah Shahidi, then the highest partnership for any wicket in Tests for Afghanistan.
The final years of Asghar's captaincy were marked by sackings and reappointments, culminating in him quitting cricket after the T20 World Cup. When he retired, he had the most wins as a T20I captain, surpassing the likes of Eoin Morgan and MS Dhoni.
Batting & Fielding