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CWC 2019: Afghanistan's chief selector wants the team to reach the semifinals 

422   //    09 May 2019, 15:04 IST

Bangladesh v Afghanistan - 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup
Bangladesh v Afghanistan - 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup

What's the story?

Afghanistan, who qualified for the ICC World Cup 2019 after winning the ICC World Cup Qualifiers in 2018 have expressed their ambition to reach the semifinals of the tournament at least. Their chief selector, Dawlat Khan Ahmadzai thus expressed his confidence over the team's chances during a recent interview with PTI.

The background

Afghanistan have had a meteoric rise in the world of cricket after the 2010 ICC T20 World Cup. They have qualified for almost every ICC tournament since that tourney. They achieved their first World Cup match victory in 2015 when they defeated Scotland. The Afghan team has the likes of Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Mohammad Nabi, Mohammad Shehzad in their squad who have proven themselves match-winners worldwide. 

Last year, they performed impressively in the Asia Cup 2018. Afghanistan even registered their first Test victory recently which has established them as one of the forces to reckon with heading into the ICC World Cup.

Also Read - 3 teams whom Afghanistan can beat at the ICC World Cup 2019

The heart of the matter

Despite the fact that Afghanistan are ranked number 10 in the ICC ODI Rankings, their chief selector is confident that the team will make it to the semifinals. Dawlat Khan was quoted by PTI as follows:

"There was no Rashid or Mujeeb in 2015 [Afghanistan finished sixth in a seven-team pool] so this time we are aiming for a semifinal berth. With the team composition we have, we can definitely surprise a few teams. Hamid Hassan is back into the fast bowling attack and that is a big boost. He has been a great fast bowler for Afghanistan and will lead the pace attack alongside Dawlat Zadran.”

Ahmadzai also expressed his happiness over the team's preparations for the World Cup.

What' next?

The Blue Tigers will play ODIs versus Scotland and Ireland before they play their first World Cup match of 2019 against Australia.

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