Afghanistan Cricket Board has decided to replace left arm spinner Sharafuddin Ashraf as a replacement for Asghar Afghan who played his last match against Namibia after announcing his retirement from international cricket. Former Afghanistan skipper Asghar Afghan will not play for the remainder of the tournament. The 33-year-old was also given a guard of honour as he walked out to bat.
ICC’s technical committee on Tuesday approved the replacement of the 26-year-old spinner. The left arm spinner was included as one of the reserve players for the tournament. Sharafuddin has played 9 T20Is and 17 ODIs so far in which he has picked up 18 wickets.
“All-rounder Sharafuddin, who has played 17 ODIs and nine T20Is, was approved as a replacement following concerns over Asghar’s mental wellbeing,” the ICC said in a statement.
“Sharafuddin was a reserve as per the allowance for teams to travel with extra players in view of Covid-19 quarantine requirements.”
Asghar Afghan shocked everyone across the world when he made up his mind to retire in the middle of the tournament. Asghar announced the decision with less than 24 hours after losing the game against Pakistan. Asghar stated that he wanted to give the youngsters a chance to play in the tournament. He also revealed that his teammates tried to convince him to play atleast till the end of the tournament but the latter says that he made up his mind earlier.
“I want to give chance to youngsters now. It is the right time for the youngsters come forward. Most of the people asked to continue till the end of the tournament. But I thought this is the right time after the loss in the last game. There are plenty of memories. This is tough for me,” Asghar Afghan said on Sunday during the game against Namibia.
Afghanistan are currently sitting 2nd in the table with two wins in three matches so far with a good net run rate. They are yet to play India, New Zealand and Scotland in the tournament.