With the current state of affairs in Afghanistan, questions have been asked if star spinner Rashid Khan and all-rounder Mohammad Nabi will be available for the UAE leg of the Indian Premier League, starting on September 19. Sunrisers Hyderabad confirmed on Monday that the two Afghanistan players will play in the remaining part of the 14th edition of the league.
Sunrisers CEO K Shanmugam said the two Afghanistan players will be a part of the IPL in the UAE. “We haven’t spoken on what is happening at present, but they are available for the tournament,” he said. When asked on the departure of the team for UAE, he said: “We are leaving at the end of the month, August 31.”
Former England skipper Kevin Pietersen said spinner Rashid Khan is worried about the situation in Afghanistan and he is not able to get his family out of the country. Flight operations from around the world are affected at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International airport due to the ongoing turmoil in Afghanistan. Rashid is currently in the UK playing for Trent Rockets in the inaugural edition of the Hundred.
“There’s a lot of things that are happening at home. We had a long chat here on the boundary talking about it and he’s worried: he can’t get his family out of Afghanistan and there’s a lot of things happening for him,” Pietersen said on Sky Sports. “For him to turn up and put on a performance like this under the pressure that he is currently under, for him to be able to forget that stuff and navigate his story and continue the momentum that he has — I think that’s probably one of the most heart-warming stories of this Hundred so far.”
Last month, the BCCI announced the schedule for the remainder of the IPL 2021 which will be held in the UAE. A total of 31 matches will be played in the duration of 27 days. The 14th season, which was postponed in May this year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, will resume on September 19 in Dubai with the clash between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians.
The action will then shift to Abu Dhabi where the Kolkata Knight Riders will square off against Royal Challengers Bangalore. Sharjah will host its first game on September 24 when Royal Challengers Bangalore take on Chennai Super Kings. In all, 13 matches will be held in Dubai, 10 in Sharjah, and 8 in Abu Dhabi.