The Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) CEO Hamid Shinwari confirmed to ESPNcricinfo, Afghanistan’s three-match ODI series against Pakistan has been moved from Hambantota to Pakistan because of logistical challenges in the Afghanistan team’s travel.
No commercial flights are taking off from Kabul following the Taliban takeover of the country and Sri Lanka announced a 10-day lockdown on Friday, two days after the country reported 3,793 new cases and a highest-ever single-day death toll of 187.
The Afghanistan contingent was supposed to travel by road to Pakistan, then fly to Dubai, and then on to Colombo for the series, but the circuitous route is throwing up logistical challenges because of the COVID-19 protocols.
The Afghanistan team will now travel to Pakistan later this week and the ACB is yet to announce the venue(s) for the ODIs starting 03rd September.
It will still remain a “home” series for Afghanistan and was originally scheduled to be played in the United Arab Emirates.
ESPNcricinfo had learnt that the Pakistan Cricket Board had offered to host the series in one venue in Pakistan when the UAE plan fell through, but the ACB had declined then.
This will be the first bilateral series between the two teams.
Afghanistan 17-member squad for the tour had assembled in Kabul last week to train amid the Taliban’s takeover of the country.