Afghanistan arrive in India as the third ODI World Cup participant, having first done so in Australia and New Zealand in 2015. Shahidi, who was named captain of the team in the ODIs and Tests in May, is confident that the current team is in a better position than its predecessors. I think we have a different mentality now and as a team and as a leader, I am very confident this time for this World Cup. I think we will make this tournament historic for the people of our country.
Among the factors giving Shahidi confidence is familiarity with the conditions, which goes beyond the fact that many Afghan players are part of IPL franchises. As you know, our players play a lot in the IPL, but even those who don’t play know the conditions because India is our home. Since Afghanistan’s previous base was Sharjah in the UAE, the BCCI has hosted the neighboring country’s national team at venues in Dehradun, Greater Noida and even in a newly renovated building.Head Stadium Ekana to Lucknow.
The presence of former Indian captain Ajay Jadeja as the national team mentor also augurs well. He has played a lot here and is also a very positive person. Speaking of positive, Rahmanullah Gurbaz at the top of the team, who has scored hundreds against Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka in the last 50-over games, provides a cushion that previous Afghanistan teams lacked. Of his approach, Shahidi said: I always tell him: Play your own way. That’s your strength. You are just very talented and you are one of the best players in the team, so you have to take responsibility.