Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) CEO Asadullah Khan on Tuesday said that discussion on whether any action should be taken against Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi for the pair’s dissenting tweets on the recent change of captaincy in the national team will be deliberated on after the 2019 World Cup. “Rashid and Nabi are going to play in the World Cup and so we have not spoken on this. If anything needs to be done it will be discussed after the World Cup,” Khan told reporters in New Delhi.
Afghanistan’s chief selector Dawlat Khan said that both Rashid and Nabi have been made to understand that the decision was in the best interests of the team and are now happy. “The issue was handled professionally. They felt that this was not the right time to change the captaincy but later understood that this was in the best interest of the team,” he said. The ACB had announced on April 5 that incumbent skipper in all formats Asghar Afghan had been stripped off his role. He was replaced by Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan and Rahmat Shah for ODIs, T20Is and Tests respectively. Rashid, considered the biggest star in the team and the no.1 ranked T20 bowler in the world, said in a series of tweets that he strongly disagrees with the decision.
“With all the respect to the Selection Committee, I strongly disagree with the decision as it is irresponsible & bias. As we have @cricketworldcup in front of us, Captain #MAsgharAfghan should remain as our team Captain. His captaincy is highly instrumental for team success. With just months to go for such a mega event like the World Cup, changing the captain will cause uncertainty and also team morale will be affected. (sic.),” he wrote.
Veteran player Mohammad Nabi wrote, “Being a senior member of the side & having seen the rise of Afghanistan cricket @ashrafghani I don’t think it’s the right time to change the captain before the WC @afgexecutive The team has gelled really well under #Asghar & personally feel he is the right man to lead us(sic.)”
Dawlat said that the move was seen as a way to set the team for a transition to younger players. “We cannot win the World Cup with Asghar or Gulbaddin but it was a great opportunity for us to promote a younger player to the position of leader,” he said.