Asghar Afghan was on Friday sacked as Afghanistan skipper with the country’s cricket board splitting the leadership role across the three formats, a move that has not gone down well with senior players Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi.
The development comes with less than two months to go for the World Cup. The Afghanistan Cricket Board removed Afghan from captaincy in all three formats, naming Rahmat Shah, Gulbadin Naib and Rashid as skippers of the Test, ODI and T20I teams respectively.
The 31-year-old Afghan had replaced Nabi as captain in 2015. Under his leadership, Afghanistan became a Full Member of the International Cricket Council and secured their maiden Test win against Ireland in Dehradun last month.
He also led the team to victory in the ICC World Cup Qualifier 2018 when they beat the West Indies in the final. Across formats, Afghanistan won 37 out of 59 games under Afghan’s captaincy.
The ACB’s announcement was not taken well by Rashid and Nabi, who are currently playing in the Indian Premier League.
“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,” tweeted Rashid.
“With just months to go for such a mega event like World Cup, changing the captain will cause uncertainty and also team morale will be affected,” he added.
Nabi, too, expressed his frustration on the social media networking site.
“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,” he wrote.