Asghar Afghan to join Gulbadin naib-led CWC team

The inclusion of Asghar Afghan, the former captain, and the return of Hamid Hassan, the fast bowler, was the big news as Afghanistan announced their 15-man squad for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019 on Monday, 22 April.

Asghar Afghan to join Gulbadin naib-led CWC team
Asghar Afghan to join Gulbadin naib-led CWC team

Hassan, 31-year-old fast bowler, last played the sport at a senior level in 2017, with fitness issues hampering his involvement since. He has, however, made a dramatic comeback to the squad, although his fitness remains under scrutiny.

Hassan’s inclusion came at the expense of Shapoor Zadran, whose ODI numbers have been on the wane. The other frontline quicks in the side are Dawlat Zadran and Aftab Alam. Naib slots in as a seaming all-rounder.


“Luckily for us, the comeback of senior fast bowler Hamid Hassan is good news,” Dawlat Khan Ahmadzai, the chief selector, said. “However, we will take into account his form and fitness during upcoming practice matches.”

Afghan, who was axed as captain earlier this month, was included as well. He will be one of Afghanistan’s key middle-order batsmen, along with Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Naib, and Najibullah Zadran. The presence of Nabi, Rashid, and Samiullah Shinwari means that Afghanistan will bat fairly deep.

As for the openers, Afghanistan has two options in Noor Ali Zadran and Hazratullah Zazai to partner with Mohammad Shahzad, who is a guaranteed starter for his batting and wicket-keeping. Javed Ahmadi, who was also in the race, was left out.

In the spin department, Afghanistan decided to stick to just Rashid Khan, Mujeeb ur Rahman and Mohammad Nabi as their primary options with Shinwari and Rahmat Shah serving as part-time options. Left-arm wrist-spinner Zahir Khan, who played his only ODI against Ireland in March, was left out.

“It has been a six-month preparation process for the ICC Cricket World Cup. The mission is to play inspirational cricket in the tournament; I know there are strong teams but we will do our level best to achieve our goals,” said Ahmadzai. “There were some challenges that we needed to handle. We selected the best squad considering factors such as experience, fitness, team balance, current form, and conditions.”

Afghanistan also has picked three reserve options in Ikram Ali Khil, Karim Janet, and Sayed Shirzad. Ikram Ali Khil is a top-order batsman and offers an emergency wicket-keeping option. The other two are seam-bowling options.

Squad: Gulbadin Naib (c), Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Samiullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman.

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Rugby World Cup Squads Wait For Players Due To An Insurance Dispute

An insurance wrangle between World Rugby football and the leadership is threatening to severely hamper Rugby World Cup 2019 preparations for nations like as Wales and Scotland who might be deprived of their players within the buildup to the tournament.

If the clash isn’t fixed, the Guardian understands Premiership Rugby Limited (PRL) plans to prevent players from nations aside from England joining their teams till mid-August, once the official Test window opens, only thirty-five days before the initial match in Japan.

Rugby World Cup Squads Wait For Players Due To An Insurance Dispute Tickets
Rugby World Cup Squads Wait For Players Due To An Insurance Dispute

Wales would be without a host of most important international tournaments including Taulupe Faletau, Dan Biggar and Liam Williams for their strategic altitude training camp in July similarly as their initial World Cup preparation match in contradiction of England at Twickenham on Eleven-Aug.

Scotland who might be denied quick contact to Stuart Hogg dependent on the terms and begin date of his Exeter contract would be hit hard, having included 9 Premiership Rugby Limited (PRL) players in their squad this season, whereas Italy and a host of tier 2 nations would also be disrupted.

Warren Gatland selected Josh Adams, Tomas Francis and Luke Charteris for their summer tour however PRL refused to release them for the fixture against South Africa in Washington DC in early June as a result of it fell outside the official summer Test window.

As Gatland said: “I understand completely what PRL are trying to do in the autumn when we organize a fourth international. They’re protecting their own competition. I realize that too. However, I just can’t comprehend why they would stop players from joining us a week or too early.”

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RWC 2019 – Sean Maitland and Chris Harris ruled out of Wales and Scotland clash

Scotland has suffered another injury setback with Sean Maitland and Chris Harris each dominated out of Saturday’s Six Nations clash with Wales at Murray field. Saracens wing Maitland picked up a foot injury throughout his club’s win over Northampton last weekend whereas Harris suffered a calf strain as urban center beat Worcester.

Rugby World Cup 2019 Tickets
RWC 2019 – Sean Maitland and Chris Harris ruled out of Wales clash and Scotland

Sean Maitland and Chris Harris will now sit out Scotland’s penultimate Six Nations clash, with Maitland’s absence especially one coach Gregor Townsend may do without, having already lost full-back, Stuart Hogg. Confirming the news, a spokesperson for the Scottish Rugby football Union said: “Maitland and Harris will return to their clubs for ongoing care and assessment.”

Back-to-back defeats by Ireland and France have complete Scottish hopes of snatching the Guinness Six Nations crown. But Townsend’s team will still play the part of an influential person over the ultimate time period of the competition, as they combat title contenders Wales and European nation.

Glasgow winger Tommy Seymour said: “There’s been a disappointment and that we will actually resurrect a lot of stuff in the next 2 games.” In terms of what we wish to get out of it, it’s primarily about where we have a tendency to see ourselves and what we’ve done.

It’s a big year for every international side going into a Rugby World Cup 2019 and we’ve got a lot of things we wish to simply put right for ourselves, get across on the park for the fans, for us. “If we are able to get 2 wins, it puts us in an exceedingly higher light and will wonder for Scotland. That is our main concern.”