Afghanistan Cricket Board Says Australia’s Decision To Dump Series Over Taliban Crackdown ‘Pathetic’

Australia were due to face their Afghan counterparts in three games in March.© AFP

Afghanistan’s cricket board said Thursday the decision by its Australian counterpart to withdraw from an upcoming series over a Taliban crackdown on women’s rights was unfair and pathetic. “Afghanistan Cricket Board is extremely disappointed and saddened by the pathetic statement of Cricket Australia to withdraw from Afghanistan’s home three-match ODI series in March,” the board said in a statement.

Australia pulled out of an upcoming one-day series against Afghanistan in the United Arab Emirates on Thursday, citing Taliban moves to further restrict women’s rights. The men’s team were due to face their Afghan counterparts in three games in March following a tour to India. However, Cricket Australia said that, after talks with concerned parties that included the Australian government, the series would no longer take place. “This decision follows the recent announcement by the Taliban of further restrictions on women’s and girls’ education and employment opportunities and their ability to access parks and gyms,” it said in a statement.

“CA is committed to supporting growing the game for women and men around the world, including in Afghanistan.

“(We) will continue to engage with the Afghanistan Cricket Board in anticipation of improved conditions for women and girls in the country,” it said.

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