Cricket fans in Uttarakhand will get a chance to watch international cricket matches in the hill state next month, when Afghanistan will clash with Ireland. Last year, Bangladesh team had toured Dehradun to play a cricket series with Afghanistan.
The Afghanistan Cricket Board will host Ireland for a month-long series of three T-20 matches, five ODI and one test match from 21 February to 19 March 2019 at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Dehradun.
The Test match will be the first between ICC’s new full members after Afghanistan and Ireland obtained Test playing status in 2017. Afghanistan’s inaugural Test match came against India while Ireland played Pakistan in their first match.
The Irish side will arrive in India on 18 February and play their first T-20 international against Afghanistan on 21 February, followed by second on 23 February and final T-20 on 24 February. The ODI series will kick off from 28 February and the lone Test match will be played from 15 March. Afghanistan has made Dehradun their home ground.
Afghanistan Cricket Board’s Chief Executive Officer Shafiqullah Stanikzai said, “Initially, we planned to conclude the series on 23 March but keeping in mind the dates of the Indian Premier League in which three of Afghanistan’s main players will be participating, the dates were slightly adjusted and I would like to thank Cricket Ireland for honouring our request.
The series will be important for Afghanistan as we are in the preparation stage of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 and we are certain that both sides will play competitive cricket.”
Warren Deutrom, Chief Executive of Cricket Ireland, said: “We look forward to a great series – which will include Ireland’s first overseas test match.” Afghanistan is currently ranked 8th in T-20 and 10th in ODIs whereas Ireland is ranked 17th in T-20 and 12th in ODIs and both sides will aim to improve their rankings and achieve valuable rating points.