File photo of Afghanistan cricket team. Photograph:( AFP )
Miseries continue for Afghanistan cricket. If the national side decides to participate in the forthcoming T20 World Cup under the Taliban flag, it could face a potential ICC ban.
Afghanistan has been under severe stress in the past few months, ever since the Taliban outfit took over from the government. However, the Taliban group had made it clear that they will allow the senior men's cricket team to function without any interference from their end. Thus, the Afghanistan's men's cricket team is set to take part in the forthcoming T20 World Cup, which will commence from October 17 in the UAE. However, things could still go downhill for the Asian side if they play under the Taliban flag.
In case, Afghanistan goes ahead and decides to take part under the Taliban flag, the repercussions could be huge for them as the International Cricket Council (ICC) can ban the team from participating in the marquee event and suspend them as well.
After the removal of executive director Hamid Shinwari by Taliban rulers, the talks doing the rounds are that the men’s cricket team might play under the Taliban flag in the seventh edition of the T20 WC. For the unversed, all 16 participating countries are required to submit the flags under which they will be playing in the coming few days. Hence, all eyes are on Afghanistan. The ICC might set up a meeting soon if the Rashid Khan-starrer participate under the Taliban flag; where a board meeting could then vote to suspend the team.
At present, some of the Afghanistan players are busy involved in the second and final leg of the IPL 2021 edition, being held in the UAE which will be followed by the T20 WC. Thus, it remains to be seen what action will the ICC take if Afghanistan turn up under the Taliban flag for the showpiece event.