Afghanistan pacer Naveen-ul-Haq to take a short break from ODIs

Afghanistan pacer Naveen-ul-Haq to take a short break from ODIs

Naveen-ul-Haq last played an ODI against Ireland in January 2021.

Naveen-ul-Haq. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)

Afghanistan pacer Naveen-ul-Haq has decided to take a short break from ODIs. The reason for him taking this decision is so that he can prepare himself for the upcoming T20 World Cup, which is all set to take place in Australia this year. Thus, he will still be available to play for Afghanistan in the shortest format of the game.

It is to be noted that he was last seen during the ICC T20 WC 2021 against New Zealand. He had taken five wickets during the tournament.

According to a report by Cricbuzz, the right-hander has told the Afghanistan Cricket Board that he wants to be ‘mentally and physically’ ready for the world event. While the 22-year-old has barely played 20 games in international cricket, he has already impressed one and all. In the seven ODIs he has played so far, the Afghan bowler has picked 14 wickets.

His bowling average and strike rate in this format of the game are 25.43 and 26.36 respectively. Moreover, he has been a regular feature in the limited-overs setup ever since he made his ODI debut in 2016. However, with 18 wickets in 13 T20Is at an average of 18.33, his record in the 20-over format is superb as well.

Afghanistan set to play an ODI series against India

Besides, the fast bowler has also played in several T20 leagues across the globe. Most notably, he has played for franchises such as Guyana Amazon Warriors, Leicestershire, Sylhet Thunder, Colombo Stars and Kandy Tuskers. Thus, with him focusing on the T20 WC 2022, he is expected to be a force to reckon with in the mega-event.

In the meantime, while Naveen won’t be participating in the ODIs for a while, his team have a tight schedule ahead of them. They will first play a three-match ODI series against the Netherlands in Qatar. This series is all set to start on January 21.

Later Afghanistan are scheduled to tour Bangladesh for a limited-overs series in February. According to their schedule, they will also be playing an ODI series against India in March 2022. Thus, they have a busy cricket calendar, and will continuously be playing for a while.