Thirty-three-year-old Asghar Afghan is a middle-order batsman who has represented Afghanistan in all three formats of international cricket in the last decade. With his consistent run-making in all formats, Afghan could continue to play a leading role in the development of Afghanistan’s cricket in the foreseeable future.
Afghanistan, Mohammedan Sporting Club, Amo Region, Band-e-Amir Dragons, Kabul Eagles, Maratha Arabians, Kabul Region, Kandahar Knights
Afghan has had a late entry to Test cricket, with this first match happening only in June 2018 against India at Bangalore. He made 11 and 25 in a match that the hosts won. He got his first Test half-century in the very next match against Ireland at Dehradun in March 2019. He scored 67 to help Afghanistan to a score of 314, replying to an Ireland score of 172. With a set target of 147 to win, Afghanistan won by seven wickets. Afghan had a spectacular showing in his next Test against Bangladesh at Chattogram in September 2019 when he missed his first Test ton by eight runs. His 92 had helped Afghanistan to a score of 342 before they bowled out Bangladesh for 205. Afghan scored 50 in the second knock in his team score of 260 and Afghanistan went on to win the match by 224 runs. Afghan played his last Test match in November 2019 against the West Indies at Lucknow. In four Tests, Asghar Afghan has scored 249 runs at an average of 35.57, with the highest score of 92.
Afghan played his first ODI against Scotland at Benoni in April 2009. Though he scored just nine runs, Afghanistan won by 89 runs. He scored his first ODI half-century against the Netherlands at Rotterdam in July 2010. His 64 helped Afghanistan to a target of 219 with five wickets to spare. He followed that knock with several impressive innings, including 55 not out against Kenya at Nairobi in October 2010, helping his side to a six-wicket win. Other innings that stood out were 66 against Australia at Sharjah in August 2012, 90 not out against Bangladesh at Fatullah in February 2014 and 54 against Sri Lanka at Dunedin in February 2015. Afghan got his first ODI ton (101) against Ireland at Greater Noida in March 2017. Unfortunately, Afghanistan lost the match though Asghar’s innings took them close to chasing a daunting target of 339. He had impressive knocks of 75, 54 and 82 against Ireland in March 2019. He made 86 n his last ODI against the West Indies at Lucknow in November 2019 in a losing cause. In 111 ODIs, Asghar has made 2356 runs at 24.54, including the best batting of 101. As a part-time medium-pace bowler, he has taken three wickets with the best bowling performance of 1/1.
He played his first T20I against Ireland at Colombo in February 2010. He followed that up with several match-winning innings, including 30 against Scotland in the UAE in March 2013, 43 against Kenya at Sharjah in September 2013, 44 not out against the UAE at Edinburgh in July 2015, 55 not out against Scotland at Nagpur in March 2016 during the World T20. His highest score of 62 came in the same competition against Sri Lanka though in a lost game for Afghanistan. He also had some great innings in lost games, including 49 against Nepal at Chattogram in March 2014 and 51 against Hong Kong at Abu Dhabi in November 2015. He played his last T20I against Ireland in Greater Noida in March 2020, in a tied match that Ireland eventually won. In 69 T20Is, Asghar has made 1248 runs at an average of 21.15, including his best batting of 62. He has also taken one wicket with the best bowling performance of 1/14.