Rashid Khan threatens BBL pullout after Australia postpone Afghanistan T20Is: 'Why you want me to play in your country?' | Crickit
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Rashid Khan threatens BBL pullout after Australia postpone Afghanistan T20Is: 'Why you want me to play in your country?'

Apr 17, 2024 02:30 PM IST

Rashid Khan is mulling opting out of the Big Bash League in the wake of Australia postponing their T20I series in Afghanistan.

Rashid Khan's BBL future is uncertain as he contemplates leaving the league in response to Australia's repeated postponement of their series with Afghanistan. Australia had previously withdrawn from a one-off Test match and a one-day international series against Afghanistan to be played in the United Arab Emirates in March 2023 due to 'a marked deterioration' in the treatment of females in the country.

Rashid Khan is upset... and you can't blame him. (AFP)
Rashid Khan is upset... and you can't blame him. (AFP)

Rashid, while emphasising the importance of facing top teams, sees these games as learning experiences that prepare Afghanistan for the high-stakes environment of the World Cup. But speaking to ESPNcricinfo, Afghan cricket star Rashid, a key player for the BBL's Adelaide Strikers, voiced his concerns about Cricket Australia's treatment of his home country.

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"It does hurt you. You do want to play against the best teams and that's where your cricket is going to improve more and more. You only get the opportunity playing against them [Australia] in the World Cups, but not in bilateral series. You don't want to play with my colleagues and you want to play with me. So what's the difference? It means I'm putting my colleagues down as well. My country down as well," he said.

Rashid pointed to the recent T20 series against India as a prime example of how playing strong teams elevates Afghanistan's performance on the international stage.

"We nearly chased 200 [212] against India. Imagine if you wouldn't have played that, where would the confidence come from? Imagine if you wouldn't have played that, where would the confidence come from? Playing against big teams is huge for us" said Rashid on the eve of Gujarat Titans' IPL match against Delhi Capitals.

Cricket Australia says it has postponed the men’s bilateral T20 series as 'conditions for women and girls in Afghanistan are getting worse'. "For this reason, we have maintained our previous position," cricket's governing body in the country said in its statement.

Australia most recently played Afghanistan in the ODI World Cup in June 2023. This marked their fourth meeting in international cricket, with Australia winning all encounters so far. All matches have been limited-overs formats, with no Tests played and only one bilateral ODI series in 2012.

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