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Men’s ODI WC: Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan lashes out at former ACB Chief Executive over ‘past compromises’

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New Delhi, Oct 2 (IANS) Ahead of 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup, Afghanistan’s premier leg-spinner Rashid Khan has lashed out at former Afghanistan Cricket Board Chief Executive Shafiq Stanikzai over ‘past compromises’.

Taking to social media platform ‘X’, formerly known as Twitter, Rashid also asked Stanikzai to stop spreading false information about the team, while claiming that Afghanistan is having its fittest squad till date for the upcoming ODI World Cup happening in India from October 5 to November 19.

“I think it’s the best and one of the most fit teams we have ever had for any of the mega events so far and I believe we can deliver to the best this time. Many compromises has been done during your management @ShafiqStanikzai in the past while selecting the teams for the Wold Cups which has costed the nation many important games.”

“Instead of spreading false information it should be better to support this bunch of great and best guys,” wrote Rashid. Stanikzai was the ACB Chief Executive from 2014-2019 and had also founded the T20 franchise tournament named ‘Afghanistan Premier League’. In his response, Stanikzai admitted to being “bewildered” by Rashid’s claims.

“My Dear Champ @rashidkhan_19 Your tweet has left me somewhat bewildered. It appears to be at odds with the sentiments you've previously expressed. Do you recall your past tweets where you laudedme, dedicating victories to my contributions to the ACB after my tenure?”

“Initially, I had no intention of responding to your tweet; I thought I'd save the ear-twitching for our next meeting. However, since you've accused me falsely and given your global star status, with millions of fans worldwide, and my own cricket administration role, with admirers across the globe, I feel compelled to set the record straight and remind you of my achievements for Afghan Cricket.”

Stanikzai went on to list what all was done in his tenure with ACB. “1. I meticulously crafted the team for the 2016 T20 World Cup, where Afghanistan won four games, including a victory against the reigning champions, West Indies.”

“2. I nurtured our U19 team, which clinched the Asia Cup and reached the World Cup semi-finals. 3. Every Afghan player recognized as a test cricketer owes their success to my dedication. 4. The domestic cricketers who hold the title of First-class cricketers are products of my management and compromises.”

“5. Your and Nabi's IPL selections, without prior exposure, were orchestrated and the result of my management. 6. The presence of 14 standard cricket stadiums in Afghanistan stands as a testament to my management.”

Stanikzai concluded by saying he hasn’t ever criticised Afghanistan or Rashid. “I still vividly recall our last phone conversation, your words of admiration for me, and concernswith the current system. Please understand, I haven't criticized you or the team. Nevertheless, I do possess profound insights into preparing a team and players for mega events.”

“My champion, your tweet did disappoint me, but rest assured, I still hold you in high regard and remain immensely proud of you and the entire team. I am, and will forever be, an ardent admirer of you and the Blue Tigers. With respect and best wishes,”

Afghanistan will open its 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup campaign against Bangladesh at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala on October 7.



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