KABUL: Afghanistan announced on Tuesday it will host Pakistan for three Twenty20 Internationals in Sharjah later this month, the first bilateral series between the neighbours.
Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) said their home season will start with the series against Pakistan.
“Afghanistan’s international home season 2023-24 will begin with a three-match T20I home series against Pakistan to be played in Sharjah on March 25, 27 and 29,” said a ACB release.
Afghanistan was due to start its season with a One-day International series against Australia in March this year but Cricket Australia (CA) refused to play in protest at the treatment of women in the war-torn country.
CA had also refused to host Afghanistan for a Test match in November 2021 for the same reason.
ACB chairman Mirwais Ashraf welcomed Pakistan’s decision to play his team.
“We appreciate Pakistan Cricket Board’s willingness to play Afghanistan in March. This is a significant accomplishment for the two neighbouring countries,” Ashraf said in the statement.
Afghanistan have played Pakistan in three T20 Internationals and four ODIs in multi-national events — without any win so far — but this will be the first bilateral series between the two countries.
Our Sports Reporter from Lahore adds: Meanwhile, chairman of the PCB Interim Management Committee Najam Sethi welcomed the series.
“I am delighted that the inaugural Pakistan versus Afghanistan T20I series will be played later this month in a city that has a large expat community and which has always supported cricketers from both the countries,” a PCB press release quoted Sethi as saying.
Published in Dawn, March 8th, 2023