The Afghanistan (A) cricket team have replaced Australia in a development tour of South Africa. This was after Australia had to pull out due to the ongoing pay dispute between its players and the board. With no further progress in talks, the players decided they would boycott the triangular series between the ‘A’ sides.
Cricket South Africa chief executive Haroon Lorgat released a statement and said, “We are delighted that Afghanistan has accepted our invitation and look forward to welcoming them to our country for the very first time. They are a passionate cricket nation and I expect the Afghanistan A team to compete strongly against our A team and India A in the upcoming tri-series.”
Afghanistan Cricket Board chief executive Shafiqullah Stanikzai also spoke to the media and said, “We are very pleased to accept Cricket South Africa’s invitation to participate in the upcoming triangular series”. “This will be our first-ever visit to South Africa and I am certain that this will give Afghanistan ‘A’ team very good exposure to competitive cricket.”
It may be recalled here that The International Cricket Council (ICC) had voted last month and made Afghanistan, along with Ireland, full members of the organisation and thereby allowed the two nations to become part of the elite 12 nations who play test matches. Meanwhile, the Australia ‘A’ side which was supposed to tour were supposed to play two four-day matches and a 50-over tri-series against India and South Africa.