Afghan fans in cricket heaven as dream comes true

October 5, 2013 | By | Reply More

Oct 05, –   War-torn Afghanistan erupted in wild celebrations on Friday as its cricket team beat Kenya to qualify for the 2015 World Cup, just 12 years after the game took hold in the wake of the Taliban’s fall.

hromedia - Afghan fans in cricket heaven as dream comes trueAbout 3,000 fans packed onto the field at Kabul’s only cricket stadium to watch the match on a big screen, with noisy chants and dancing marking each boundary as Afghan batsmen carried the side to an easy victory in Sharjah.

Celebratory gunfire tore through the air in the eastern city of Jalalabad, but there was no immediate repeat of the nationwide explosion of bullets that met Afghanistan’s recent victory in the South Asian Football Federation cup.

“Tears come out of my eyes because of my happiness,” Zakir Mohammadi, 23, told AFP, the national flag draped across his shoulders.

“I am speechless and can’t express myself. This is a great feat for our cricket team and for all Afghans.”

Large crowds of supporters also celebrated in the southern city of Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban, where police issued strict warnings on the radio before the game that people should not celebrate by firing guns in the air.

“This is a great success for our country. Afghanistan have proved their ability to the world despite 30 years of war,” Shahzada Masood, chairman of Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB), said.

“This shows the talent of our players. They can beat any team on their day despite the limited facilities that they have.” Afghanistan’s cricket side has progressed rapidly since the country emerged from the austere rule of the Taliban in 2001.

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Category: International

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