The United Arab Emirates (UAE) will host a three-match T20I series against Afghanistan from February 16–18 in Abu Dhabi as part of an agreement signed by the two cricket boards last November. The Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) and Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) have confirmed the bilateral series in the desert kingdom on Saturday.
The two cricket boards signed a five-year agreement on November 27 in which the Emirates Cricket Board will provide the Afghanistan Cricket Board with logistical and infrastructure support, including hosting their “home” matches. The Afghans will play a series of three T20I matches with the UAE every year as part of the agreement.
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Afghanistan have named a preliminary squad of 22 players, led by leg-spinner Rashid Khan, for a preparation camp in the UAE. The squad will leave for the UAE next week for a conditioning camp in Abu Dhabi and will then be trimmed down to 17 members before the series.
They haven’t named their coaching staff as the contracts of head coach Jonathan Trott and bowling coach Umar Gul were not renewed last month. Assistant coach Raees Ahmadzai will lead the supporting staff with local coaches.
The First Step In Our Long-Term Commitment – Naseeb Khan
The CEO of the Afghanistan Cricket Board, Naseeb Khan said that playing in this T20I series is just the beginning of a long-term commitment between the two boards.
“We are honoured to be part of this partnership and are pleased with the results of our recent talks and negotiations with the Emirates Cricket Board,” said Naseeb Khan, the CEO of the Afghanistan Cricket Board in a statement.
“Playing this T20I series is the first step in our long-term commitment and we are looking forward to a continued relationship with the ECB,” he added.
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We Anticipate Three Very Competitive – Mubashshir Usmani
Emirates Cricket Board General Secretary Mubashshir Usmani welcomed the players and officials of Afghanistan Cricket. Usmani said that he is anticipating a highly entertaining and competitive series between the two countries.
“Emirates Cricket are looking forward to welcoming players and staff from Afghanistan Cricket as we embark on this journey and collaboration with them. We anticipate three very competitive, highly entertaining T20I matches,” said Usmani.
Rashid Khan (c), Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Abdul Rahman Rahmani, Afsar Zazai, Azmatullah Omarzai, Bilal Sami, Farid Ahmad Malik, Fazal Haq Farooqi, Gulbadin Naib, Hazratullah Zazai, Ibrahim Zadran, Mujeeb ur Rahman, Najibullah Zadran, Nangyal Kharoti, Naveen Ul Haq, Nijat Masoud, Noor Ahmad, Rahmat Shah, Sediqullah Atal, Shahidullah Kamal, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Zahir Khan
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