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Can't Wait for T20 World Cup, Says Rashid Khan

Ace Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan says that cricket has “changed everything” in his country in the last few years and that nothing else makes his people happy.

Cricketnext Staff |January 29, 2019, 4:00 PM IST
Can't Wait for T20 World Cup, Says Rashid Khan

Ace Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan says that cricket has “changed everything” in his country in the last few years and that nothing else makes his people happy.

Speaking at the launch of the fixtures for the ICC T20 World Cup 2020, Rashid said he can't wait for the tournament.

Currently ranked 8th in the T20 rankings, Afghanistan have been grouped with  India, England and South Africa in Group 2, and will begin their campaign against one of the qualifiers on October 26 in Perth.

“We – me, (Mohammad) Nabi, Mujeeb (Ur Rahman) – just try and give our best in each and every game. The World Cup will be good experience. Can’t wait for it,” he said in a panel interview at the launch.

“It feels good. People back home, they love cricket. It has changed everything in the country in the last five-six years. The young generation… everyone’s following cricket, they love it. It means a lot that Afghanistan is participating in the World Cup.

“(The fans) are loving it. They love the sport, they love cricket. (We players) just try and give 100% in each and every competition. Everywhere, we try our best to give something to the people back home. I know what is happening, so there is nothing else that can bring such a smile on their faces."

Rashid is ranked No. 1 among T20 bowlers, No. 1 in the ODI all-rounders’ charts and No. 2 in the ODI bowlers’ rankings. All this at the tender age of 20, within three years of his international debut in 2015.

That has also meant he is in huge demand for various T20 franchises the world over, a side-effect of which is that he spends a long time away from home every year. It can be hard, but he gets by with good support from the family.

“They are just watching it, it doesn’t matter whatever the time is back home in Afghanistan,” he said. “Everyone gets together and watches in one room. It feels really good and special, having good support from the family. They just keep following me.

“When I was playing in the West Indies and the time difference was too much – matches were starting at 3am in Afghanistan – my mom was waking up and watching my game and praying for me. That is really special for me."

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