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Former fast bowler Hamid Hassan has been appointed as the bowling coach of Afghanistan starting with the three-match T20I series against Pakistan later this month. His contract is for one year.
Hassan replaces former Pakistan pacer Umar Gul, whose contract had ended at the start of the year after the Afghanistan Cricket Board extended the contracts of only head coach Jonathan Trott and fielding coach Ryan Maron.
"Cricket has been my life over the past two-three decades and is in fact something that has been my passion for my whole life," Hassan was quoted as saying in a release by the ACB. "It's a difficult decision for me to retire from the game I love the most, but I'm doing this for the sake of my country and my team.
"At the same time, I'm honored and pleased to have the opportunity to take the role of the bowling coach of our national team. I have enjoyed every bit of my playing career with this team, and the opportunity to work with our young bowling group is something I am looking forward to. I've been watching our fast bowling group closely and am excited to work with them to make this group as strong as or even stronger than our spinning department."
Hassan's last competitive cricket game was in October 2022 and is one of the players from their first batch of international cricketers who brought Afghanistan cricket on the world map. He last featured for Afghanistan in 2021 playing his first T20I in more than five years. In the last seven years, he has been coping with injuries that forced him to shorten his run up. Before those injuries, he was considered the fastest bowler that Afghanistan had ever produced.
Hassan played his last ODI in the Men's Cricket World Cup in 2019 and made his last T20I for Afghanistan in the T20 World Cup in 2021. He picked up 59 wickets in 38 ODIs and 35 T20I wickets in 25 appearances. His last competitive series was the Shpageeza Cricket League in 2022 where he picked up four wickets in three outings for Hindukush Stars.
Afghanistan's last outing was a three-match series against UAE in Abu Dhabi, that they won 2-1. They will play Pakistan in Sharjah starting March 25.