Cricket is more than just a sport in Afghanistan - Gulbadin Naib
May 24 (CRICKETNMORE) - Afghanistan captain Gulbadin Naib says that cricket has become more than just a sport in his country as they prepare to make their second appearance at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup.
The Afghanistan Cricket Board was only formed in 1995 and while, like most sports, cricket was initially banned under Taliban rule – it became an exception by being permitted from early 2000.
Their rise since then has been remarkable, securing qualification for a major tournament for the first time at the ICC T20 World Cup 2010, making their ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup bow in 2015 and acquiring Test status two years later.
They won just one match, against Scotland, at the 50-over global showpiece four years ago but have been improving ever since and can boast white-ball wins over the likes of Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, West Indies and Sri Lanka in the intervening period.
And according to skipper Gulbadin, cricket provides a uniting force for a country with a volatile political and social history.
“I’m very excited to be here,” he said. “To lead my team and my country in front of the world.