ACB CEO urges Cricket Australia to not cancel historic Test match

Dark clouds are looming over the historic Test match between Afghanistan and Australia, which is scheduled to take place later this year in Hobart. It has been reported that women’s cricket will not be supported in Afghanistan under the Taliban regime. After coming across the same, Cricket Australia made it clear the Test will be cancelled if women’s cricket is not supported in Afghanistan.

Speaking of Cricket Australia’s stand, Afghanistan Cricket Board CEO Hamid Shinwari expressed disappointment on Friday (September 10).  While Shinwari acknowledge the Australian board’s point of view, he opined an alternate solution can be found out. For the unversed, the game is scheduled to be played between November 27 and December 1 at the Bellerive Oval in Hobart. This would be Australia and Afghanistan’s first meeting in the longest format.

We believe there is an alternative: ACB CEO

However, it remains to be seen whether the game takes place or not. While Cricket Australia have made their point clear, Hamid Shinwari believes a different solution can be discovered. “It was with shock and immense disappointment that the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) received the sudden and unexpected news from Cricket Australia of the potential cancellation of the Australia-Afghanistan Cricket Test Match scheduled for November 27. We believe there is an alternative to cancelling this significant, history-making, Test match,” Shinwari was quoted as saying by Outlook.

“We accept that Cricket Australia (CA) sees cricket as ‘a sport for all and we support the game unequivocally for women at every level’. We understand, too, why ‘if recent media reports that women’s cricket will not be supported in Afghanistan are substantiated’, CA might believe they have ‘no alternative’ but to refuse to host the scheduled Test match. We believe, however, that there is an alternative,” he added.

The ACB further asserted penalizing the national team over the nation’s religious environment isn’t fair. He also urged CA to not ‘isolate them’ as it won’t bring any transition in the nation.

“The ACB is powerless to change the culture and religious environment of Afghanistan. If the CA decides to cancel the Test match and isolate the Afghan men’s national team, it will have no impact upon those cultural and religious values as they stand,” he said.