Australia’s Test captain Tim Paine is surprised that the International Cricket Council (ICC) has not said anything on the Afghanistan cricket team after reports emerged that the new government won’t allow women to play cricket.
Cricket Australia in its statement has explicitly mentioned that if the reports turn out to be true that the board won’t host Afghanistan’s men’s team for the solitary Test in Hobart in November, for which the Taliban had given the nod.
There is a T20 World Cup in a month’s time and at the moment Afghanistan are in that: Tim Paine
Afghanistan on Thursday named an 18-member squad for the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 and they are placed in Group 2 with India, Pakistan, New Zealand and two more teams subjected to qualification.
Paine is waiting for ICC’s decision regarding Afghanistan’s participation in the T20 World Cup and also noted that if teams choose to not play against them then how will they be able to participate.
“At this stage we have heard from Cricket Australia, we’ve heard from the Australian government, we’ve heard from the Australian Cricketers Association. But as yet we’ve heard nothing from the ICC, which I think is fascinating given there is a T20 World Cup in a month’s time and at the moment Afghanistan are in that,” Paine told SEN radio.
“It will be interesting to see what happens in that space. Does the team get kicked out of the World Cup?
“I imagine it will be impossible if teams are pulling out against playing against them and governments are not letting them travel to our shores, then how a team like that can be allowed to play in an ICC sanctioned event is going to be very, very hard to see,” he added.
The Hobart test with Afghanistan is not looking good: Tim Paine
Afghanistan had an opportunity to play their first Test match against Australia since they got the status of Test team after they played their first Test in India in 2018. Paine feels the Hobart Test doesn’t look good to continue as per ICC’s rule a Test-playing country should have an international women’s team.
Paine also stressed the human rights aspect while explaining that how opportunities are being snatched away from women in Afghanistan.
“(The Hobart test) is not looking good, we are in a world of trouble no doubt about that, but the reasoning around it is probably fair enough,” Paine mentioned.
“There are probably two levels to it. There’s the cricket aspect to it from an ICC point of view that to be a Test-playing nation you have to have an international women’s team, obviously with the Taliban at the moment banning women from playing any sport and that has implications at an ICC level.
“Secondly from a female, human rights point of view, excluding half of your population from trying to do something is not on. I don’t think we want to be associated with countries that are taking things or opportunities off literally half of their population,” he added.
Afghanistan are scheduled to kick off their T20 World Cup campaign on October 25.