Afghanistan to play four-team qualifier tournament to qualify for Asia Cup 2016

Afghanistan will again have the chance to participate in the Asia Cup 2016 after it was announced that one ICC Associate team will get the opportunity to take part in the main draw of the tournament.
 
According to cricinfo, a four-team qualifier tournament will take place in November and the winner will then join Asia’s four Test-playing nations of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
 
The four Associate teams will be Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Oman and UAE.
 
Afghanistan took part in the Asia Cup 2014, when they famously notched a win over Bangladesh. The historic win was celebrated with tremendous fanfare across the country.

Afghanistan took part in the Asia Cup 2014, when they famously notched a win over Bangladesh. The historic win was celebrated with tremendous fanfare across the country

The tournament was held under a 50-over format. In the final match, Sri Lanka defeated Pakistan by five wickets to clinch the title for the fifth time.
 
Asia Cup 2016 will be held between March 1 and March 10, just before the World Twenty20. Afghanistan has already qualified for the World Twenty20 2016 that will be played in India.
 
While the five-team round-robin system will be maintained in the Asia Cup 2016, the tournament will be reduced to 20-over format.
 
The four-team qualifier tournament is set to be held in November, scheduled around fixtures for the ICC Intercontinental Cup and WCL Championship.
 
Afghanistan will play Papua New Guinea in a four-day match at Sharjah between November 21 and 24.
 
Before the World Twenty20 2016 in India, Afghanistan is expected to participate in many tournaments, including against ICC Test-playing nations, the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) said recently.
 
Shafiq Stanikzai, the chief executive officer of ACB, said the team is riding high on confidence and looking forward to the next year’s cricketing extravaganza in India.

 Meanwhile, ACB has begun the hunt for new head coach of the national team as the one-year contract of Andy Moles ended last month

To prepare for the mega tournament, Afghanistan will play two Twenty20 matches against Zimbabwe in October this year, he said. After the bilateral series, Afghanistan will also feature in a triangular series with Ireland and Zimbabwe.
 
Meanwhile, ACB has begun the hunt for new head coach of the national team as the one-year contract of Andy Moles ended last month.
 
According to sources in the ACB, many names are being considered for the important assignment, mostly former cricketers from Pakistan and India.
 
Moles’ major assignment with Afghanistan was World Cup 2015, which was co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand in February-March this year.
 
Although the team failed to qualify for the knockout stage, they performed way above the expectations.
 
In the six matches Afghanistan played, they won one and lost five. They had their moments in the biggest cricketing carnival, beating Scotland in a thriller and almost pulling off a memorable upset against Sri Lanka.
 

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