Injury concerns plague Afghanistan camp ahead of T20Is and Asia Cup

Photo by Afghanistan’s Cricket Board

Afghanistan pacer Fazalhaq Farooqi was sent to hospital for scans earlier this week, ahead of the third ODI match against Bangladesh on Tuesday, after having suffered a calf muscle injury, the Afghanistan Cricket Board confirmed.

Fazalhaq Farooqi was eventually cleared to play in Tuesday’s match against Bangladesh – the final of three ODIs – and went on to be awarded Player of the Series.

“He faced some problems day before yesterday [in the opening game] and as he was finding some problem we send him to the hospital [today],” an ACB official said.

However, concerns have been raised in the cricketing fraternity about injuries, especially after the ACB recently announced that pace bowler Naveen-ul-Haq has been ruled out of the T20I series against Bangladesh with a knee injury.

Naveen will travel to the UK where he will undergo minor surgery under the care of an orthopedic specialist. Nijat Masoud has meanwhile been included in the squad for the two T20Is that get underway later this week.

The ACB said over the weekend on Twitter: “Unfortunately, Naveen will not be part of Afghanistan’s upcoming @BCBtigers T20I series and has been replaced by Nijat Masoud. We wish him a swift recovery and look forward to his return to the team.”

Afghanistan wrapped up their ODI series this week against Bangladesh with a 2-1 win and the first of their two T20Is will start on Friday, July 14. The second will be played on Sunday, July 16.

The 2023 Asia Cup meanwhile will get underway late next month with the matches to be played as One Day Internationals (ODIs). The tournament will be jointly hosted by Pakistan and Sri Lanka and six teams will take part.

Sri Lanka are the defending champions.