Afghanistan Under-19 World Cup warm-up games cancelled due to visa delays

Afghanistan Under-19 World Cup warm-up games cancelled due to visa delays

Afghanistan’s warm-up games were against England and UAE.

Afghanistan cricket team
Afghanistan cricket team. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)

The Afghanistan Under-19 World Cup campaign has been halted due to visa delays. The team is yet to arrive in West Indies and the scheduled warm-up games have now been cancelled. Afghanistan’s warm-up games were against England and UAE on January 10 and 12 at St Kitts & Nevis and St Paul’s, respectively.

Afghanistan is placed in Group C along with Pakistan, Zimbabwe and Papua New Guinea. The team is going to play its first match against Zimbabwe on January 16 followed by matches against Papua New Guinea and Pakistan on January 18 and 20, respectively.

The ICC Head of Events Chris Tetley confirmed in an official release that they are having a conversation with Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) and other stakeholders regarding this issue. The ICC is expected to resolve this issue in the next few days. The warm-up matches have also been rescheduled so that the team which is already in West Indies can prepare for the upcoming tournament.

“We have been working together with the Afghanistan Cricket Board and relevant stakeholders to try and find a resolution to the problem and allow the team to travel,” Tetley said in an official release.

“In the meantime, we have rescheduled the warm-up fixtures to ensure the teams in the region are able to continue their preparation ahead of the start of the tournament on 14 January.”

Scotland has replaced New Zealand in the Under-19 World Cup

New Zealand withdrew its name from the tournament in November last year due to Covid-19 related quarantine issues. Scotland who missed the qualification in the Europe qualifiers has replaced New Zealand in Group D which contains Sri Lanka, West Indies and Australia.

The Under-19 World Cup is scheduled to start from January 14 and will go on till February 5. The tournament contains 16 teams divided into four groups. The top two teams from each group will qualify for the Super League knockouts. The remaining teams will play in the Plate competition for positions nine to 16, and this will run simultaneously with the main tournament. Bangladesh won the last edition of the tournament after defeating India by three wickets.