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Flag of Afghanistan
Flag of Afghanistan
ICC membership granted 2001
ICC member status Affiliate member with ODI status
ICC development region Asia
World Cricket League division One
ACC Trophy division Elite
Captain Nowroz Mangal
Coach Kabir Khan
First recorded match 15 October 2001 v Nowshehra at Gymkhana Ground, Peshawar, Pakistan
One Day Internationals
ODI matches played 5
ODI wins/losses 3/2
First class cricket
First class matches played 4
First class wins/losses 3/0
List A cricket
List A matches played 15
List A wins/losses 8/7
ICC World Cup Qualifier
Appearances 1 (First in 2009)
Best result 5th (2009)
As of 25 February 2010

The Afghanistan national cricket team is the team that represents the country of Afghanistan in international cricket matches. Cricket has been played in Afghanistan since the mid 19th century, but it is only in recent years that the national team has become successful. The Afghanistan Cricket Federation was formed in 1995 and became an affiliate member of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 2001[1] and a member of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) since 2003.[2]

The national team, formed in 2001,[1] has played in the 2009 World Cup Qualifier[3] after rising rapidly through the World Cricket League, starting in Division Five in May 2008.[4]. The Team failed to qualify for the 2011 World Cup, but did earn ODI status until 2013. This makes them the first affiliate nation in the history of Cricket to gain ODI status. They play in the Elite division of the ACC Trophy.[2] On Feb 13th, 2010, the Afghan cricket team secured qualification to the 2010 ICC World Twenty20, the team's first major tournament.



Cricket was first played by the army of British East India Company in 1839, who were ruling the cities of Kandahar, Jalalabad and Kabul. The first recorded game was on 18 February 1879 between (60th Rifles (2nd Battalion) v 2nd Brigade (A, B & D Battery) The game was a draw and was played in Rabart, Kandahar

In the 1990s, cricket became popular amongst the Afghan refugees residing in Pakistan, and the Afghanistan Cricket Board was formed there in 1995. They continued to play cricket on their return to their home country.[1] Like all sports, cricket was originally banned by the Taliban, but cricket became an exception in 2000 and the Afghanistan Cricket Federation was elected as an affiliate member of the ICC the following year.[5]

The national team was invited to play in the second tier of Pakistani domestic cricket the same year,[1] and the tour brought international media attention to Afghan cricket when the US-led invasion of the country began whilst the team was in Pakistan. The team lost three and drew two of the five matches on the tour.[5]

They played in two Pakistani tournaments in 2003, winning their first match that year. They began playing in Asian regional tournaments in 2004, finishing sixth in their first ACC Trophy. More success began in 2006 when they were runners-up to Bahrain in the Middle East Cup and beat an MCC side featuring former England captain Mike Gatting by 171 runs in Mumbai. Gatting was dismissed for a duck.[5]

They toured England in the summer of 2006, winning six out of seven matches. Three of their wins came against the second XIs of Essex, Glamorgan and Leicestershire.[2] They finished third in the ACC Trophy that year, beating Nepal in a play-off match.[5]

They won their first tournament in 2007, sharing the ACC Twenty20 Cup with Oman after the two tied in the final.[5] They began their qualifying campaign for the 2011 World Cup in Jersey in 2008, winning Division Five of the World Cricket League.[4] They finished third in the ACC Trophy Elite tournament the same year,[2] and won a second consecutive WCL tournament, Division Four in Tanzania later in the year.[2]

In January 2009, Afghanistan progressed to the 2009 World Cup Qualifier by winning Division Three of the World Cricket League in Buenos Aires, topping the table on net run rate ahead of Uganda and Papua New Guinea.[3]

In the 2011 Cricket World Cup qualifying tournament, Afghanistan failed to progress to the World Cup, but earned ODI status for 4 years. Their first ODI was against Scotland in the 5th place play off, having previously beaten the Scots earlier in the tournament; Afghanistan went on to win by 89 runs.

In the Intercontinental Cup Afghanistan played their debut international first-class match against Zimbabwe XI in a four day match in Mutare, Zimbabwe. During the match which was drawn Afghan batsman Noor Ali scored centuries in both his innings, making him only the fourth player to do so on their first-class debut. Later in August 2009 they played the Netherlands in same competition at the VRA Cricket Ground historically winning a low scoring match by one wicket.

Afghanistan took part in the 2009 ACC Twenty20 Cup in the United Arab Emirates. Afghanistan were drawn in Group A, a group which Afghanistan topped at the end of the group stages by wining all five of their matches. In the semi-finals the Afghans defeated Kuwait by 8 wickets. In the final they met the hosts, the United Arab Emirates who they defeated by 84 runs, with Mohammad Nabi scoring 73 runs and 4 wickets to earn the man of the match award. This victory meant Afghanistan qualified for the cricket tournament at the 2010 Asian Games.

On 1 February 2010, Afghanistan played its first Twenty20 International against Ireland, which it lost by 5 wickets. On 13 February 2010, Afghanistan first defeated United Arab Emirates by 4 wickets to make there way to 2010 ICC World Twenty20 to be played in West Indies in April 2010. Afterwards in the same day they defeated Ireland by 8 wickets in the Final of 2010 ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier and won the Qualifiers.

Tournament history

World Cricket League

  • 2008
  • 2009

ACC Trophy

  • 1996–2002: Not eligible, not an ACC member.[2]
  • 2004: 6th place[5]
  • 2006: 3rd place[5]
  • 2008: 3rd place (Elite)[2]

ACC Twenty20 Cup

  • 2007: Joint winners with Oman[5]
  • 2009: Winner

ICC Twenty20 Cup Qualifier

  • 2010: Winner

Middle East Cup

  • 2006: Runners-up[5]

ICC World Cup Qualifier

  • 2009: 5th place

The future

Afghanistan have ongoing first-class matches in the ICC Intercontinental Cup. The team has also stated its desire to play Pakistan and Australia in the near future.[6] Afghanistan will take part in the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 competition in the West Indies. This is the first time in cricketing history that an affiliate member has qualified for a major tournament. Afghanistan have been placed in Group C with India and South Africa.

Afghanistan will play in the 2010 ICC World Cricket League Division One in the Netherlands.


Afghanistan do not play their homes matches in Afghanistan due to the ongoing security situation and the lack of international standard facilities. Afghanistan played their 'home' Intercontinental Cup fixture against Ireland at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium in Sri Lanka. Following Afghanistan's World Twenty20 qualifying campaign they played two One Day Internationals against Canada at the Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium in the UAE, after which the stadium was named the 'home' ground of Afghanistan.[7]



Current squad

The following table lists the players in Afghanistan's squads for the 2009 ICC World Cup Qualifier[8] and the 2009 ACC Twenty20 Cup:
Name Age Batting Style Bowling Style ODI matches FC matches Notes
Nowroz Mangal 25 RHB OB 3 2 Captain
Raees Ahmadzai 25 RHB OB 3 2
Samiullah Shinwari 22 RHB LB 3 2
Noor Ali 21 RHB RMF 3 2
Asghar Stanikzai 23 RHB RMF 3 2
Shabir Noori 18 RHB OB 1
Mohammad Nabi 25 RHB OB 3 2
Obaidullah Kunari Unknown RHB RMF
Mohammad Shahzad 25 RHB 2 2
Shafiqullah Shafaq 20 RHB 1
Karim Khan 27 RHB OB 1 Regular off break bowler
Badshah Hussain Unknown RHB
Hameed Hasan 22 RHB RF 3 2
Hasti Gul 26 RHB RMF 2
Dawlat Ahmadzai 25 RHB RFM 1 1
Khaleqdaad Noori 26 RHB RFM 1
Shapoor Zadran 25 LHB LFM 2 2
Mirwais Ashraf 21 RHB RFM 1 1
Nasratullah Nasrat 25 LHB SLO


One-day International

Most ODI runs for Afghanistan[12]

Player Runs Average
Mohammad Shahzad 244 61.00
Noor Ali 208 52.00
Mohammad Nabi 144 36.00
Samiullah Shenwari 122 40.66
Nowroz Mangal 113 22.60

Most ODI wickets for Afghanistan[13]

Player Wickets Average
Hameed Hasan 6 23.16
Shapoor Zadran 6 26.66
Samiullah Shenwari 6 26.83
Nowroz Mangal 4 17.25
Mohammad Nabi 4 40.25


Most first-class runs for Afghanistan[17]

Player Runs Average
Mohammad Shahzad 497 82.83
Noor Ali 464 66.28
Mohammad Nabi 316 63.20
Nowroz Mangal 272 45.33
Shabir Noori 166 55.33

Most first-class wickets for Afghanistan[18]

Player Wickets Average
Mohammad Nabi 17 31.64
Hamid Hassan 13 33.07
Shapoor Zadran 12 35.75
Dawlat Ahmadzai 9 15.33
Samiullah Shenwari 9 40.11


  1. ^ a b c d Encyclopedia of World Cricket by Roy Morgan, Sportsbooks Publishing, Page 15
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Profile of Afghanistan at the ACC website
  3. ^ a b c Afghanistan and Uganda seal place in ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier, ICC Media Release, 31 January 2009
  4. ^ a b c WCL Division Five Official Site
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i Timeline of Afghanistan cricket at CricketEurope
  6. ^ [1] at The Sunday Times sport
  7. ^ Afghanistan has a new home ground, ACC
  8. ^ Afghanistan squad,,  Retrieved on 1 May 2009.
  9. ^ Afghanistan highest totals in ODI cricket at Cricinfo
  10. ^ Individual high scores in an innings for Afghanistan in ODI cricket at Cricinfo
  11. ^ Most wickets in an innings for Afghanistan in ODI cricket at Cricinfo
  12. ^ "Afghanistan ODI Career Bowling". Cricinfo.;id=40;type=team. 
  13. ^ "Afghanistan ODI Career Bowling". Cricinfo.;id=40;type=team. 
  14. ^ [2] at Cricinfo
  15. ^ Individual high scores in an innings for Afghanistan in first-class cricket at Cricinfo
  16. ^ Most wickets in an innings for Afghanistan in first-class cricket at Cricinfo
  17. ^ "Afghanistan first-class career batting". Cricinfo.;id=40;type=team. 
  18. ^ "Afghanistan first-class career bowling". Cricinfo.;id=40;type=team. 

See also

External links


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