Afganistan has Noida sports complex as home ground

Mumbai, Dec 10 (IANS) The Board of Control for Cricket in India and Afghanistan Cricket Board (BCCI) on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority to use the Shahid Vijay Singh Pathik Sports Complex as home ground for Afghanistan cricket team.

The ground was recently inspected by the International Cricket Council (ICC) and was cleared fit for hosting Associate versus Associate One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and T20Is.

It was also cleared to host Associate versus full ICC member ‘A’ team matches. The ICC has not yet approved this ground for matches involving national teams of full members and has listed a few requirements to be approved it for hosting full members main team.

BCCI will be happy to help any ICC member for the development of the game and this is a step in developing international cricket and increasing the competition,” BCCI president Shashank Manohar said in the release.

BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur said: “Afghanistan was quite keen to shift their home base to India for sometime now and it has been BCCI’s vision to expand the game globally and help associate and affiliate members of ICC. In this direction, we identified this ground and Greater Noida authorities were open and cooperative to offer this ground to Afghanistan Cricket Board.”

Shafiq Stanikzai, CEO, Afghanistan Cricket Board, said he was grateful to the BCCI for giving them a base in the country.

“I am grateful to BCCI and particularly Anurag Thakur for offering us a home base in India. This is a historical day for Afghanistan Cricket and this will strengthen the relationship between two countries. We were trying for this for a last few years and finally we have succeeded,” he said.

“I am sure that in future we would be able to host full members’ national teams on this ground as well. I would also like to thank Greater Noida authorities for all assistance they have provided to us.”

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