Afghanistan’s U19 cricket team coach Raiees Ahmadzai, in an interview with Afghanistan’s Cricket Board (ACB), said that his team is well prepared to face any opposition in the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup.
Ahmadzai said that his team is ready for Friday’s match “just like any other match” and will play with “all their potential,” adding: “Any match against Pakistan is interesting to everyone-- including me as a coach--as Pakistan is always a strong side.”
Ahmadzai expressed confidence in his players, and said they have an advantage of high morale having beaten Pakistan several times at the U19 level previously.
Raiees credited the team’s success so far in the tournament to an all-round team performance in all departments.
“Our spinners Ghafari and Noor Ahmad, as well as pacers like Fazal Haq, have performed well with the ball-- and our batsmen have been performing well, too --hitting half-centuries and putting on good partnerships. The addition of Ibrahim Zadran has proven well for the team,” he said.
Afghanistan beat South Africa and UAE in group matches in the World Cup, and the match against Canada was abandoned due to rain, which meant Afghanistan topped Group-D with 5 points.
“We will try not to be emotional and will play with a clear mind because when players are emotional, they tend to lose their control and strength and are not able to focus on the match properly,” he said.