BCCI turns down Afghanistan’s request to host APL in India

BCCI turns down Afghanistan’s request to host APL in India

ACB also asked for a third home ground in India and the BCCI did grant them that.

APL final
APL. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Relations between India and Afghanistan – be it in diplomacy or cricket – are always good. Afghanistan never short of acknowledging the role India has played for the improvement of their cricket. Earlier this year, the newly accredited Test team played a full-fledged series against Ireland in Dehradun, Uttarakhand. They also played their inaugural Test against India in Bengaluru last year.

However, despite their good relations, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) recently turned down the Afghanistan Cricket Board’s (ACB) request to host its domestic T20 league in India. It’s quite a rare occurrence that the Indian board said no to its Afghanistan counterpart but it certainly did this time.

The Afghanistan Premier League (APL) started in October last year and all the 23 matches of the tournament were held in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. Five teams took part in the competition that was played between October 5 and 21 and it was Mohammad Nabi-led Balkh Legends who won the title beating Rashid Khan’s Kabul Zwanan by 4 wickets. The tournament was held in a round-robin format with teams playing each other twice and the top four made the semi-finals.

Not appropriate, according to the BCCI

But why did the BCCI turn down the request from one of its friendly boards? It did so considering it has its own league, the Indian Premier League.

“The ACB did request us to host its league in India but it would not be appropriate considering we have our own league (the IPL),” New Indian Express cited reports quoting a BCCI official as saying on Tuesday.

The ACB had requested the BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and General Manager, Cricket Operations, Saba Karim during a meeting in Mumbai a month ago on May 16. ACB CEO Asadullah Khan also asked for a third home ground in India after Dehradun and Greater Noida and the BCCI agreed to it. Lucknow is likely to be their third home ground.

“Since Dehradun doesn’t have a five-star hotel, hosting teams is an issue. We would prefer it to be Lucknow,” Khan was quoted as saying.

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The BCCI is also considering the ACB’s request to allow 10 of its coaches to work with the support staff of leading teams in the Ranji Trophy during the domestic season.

“It will be a great learning experience for our coaches as they will get to be with the best in the business,” said Khan.