India to host 'home' matches for Afghanistan cricket team?

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New Delhi, Apr 22: If all goes well then soon India could become second home to Afghanistan cricket team the way UAE is hosts Pakistan cricket team's matches.

As per media reports, the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) has requested its Indian counterpart Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to provide ground for its team to host matches. This would mean Afghanistan team could play matches here with other cricketing nations.

Afghanistan to play matches in India?

Media reports claim that Afghanistan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, who is scheduled to visit India shortly, will try to convince officials in New Delhi to help Afghanistan in making progress on the world stage.

ACB, reportedly, sought India's permission to allow its players to practice at Dharamshala Cricket Ground ahead of their tour to Scotland.

Just like Pakistan, Afghanistan too faces the menace of terrorism which restricts teams from other countries to visit the nation and play bilateral series. Hence, the option before Afghanistan team is to hold bilateral series outside and India could be the most suitable alternative.

[After historic World Cup win, Afghanistan dream of playing Test cricket]

India has several stadiums which host International matches, and after IPL they'll lie vacant for most of the time. Thus, it would be a win-win deal for the BCCI if it permits the ACB to host matches here for it will not only promote cricket but strengthen the relations between the two nations.

Afghanistan cricket team was lauded for its performance in the maiden ICC World Cup tournament this year. The Afghanistan team, an associate nation, not only qualified for World Cup 2015 but also registered its first win in the tournament.

Currently, Afghanistan use the Sharjah Cricket Ground in the UAE to host matches.

Basheer Stanekzai, the Afghan team's manager was quoted by media reports as saying, "It will really help our players if India were to reserve a home ground for us."

"Our players are good; they need exposure and facilities like camps. If the younger ones get to play in India, they can get noticed and picked for IPL teams."

"Besides, we are also hopeful that the BCCI will help us with technical assistance and infrastructure, which are of international standards."

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