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Cricket - Pakistan to boycott Afghan league after relations cool
June 2, 2017 / 7:41 AM / 6 months ago

Cricket - Pakistan to boycott Afghan league after relations cool

LAHORE (Reuters) - The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) will not allow its players and coaches to feature in Afghanistan’s domestic Twenty20 league next month following a breakdown in relations between their boards in the wake of Wednesday’s blast in Kabul.

Damaged cars are seen after a blast in Kabul, Afghanistan.REUTERS/Omar Sobhani

At least 80 people were killed and hundreds wounded in Kabul in an attack which, Afghanistan’s intelligence agency said, had been carried out by the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani network with assistance from Pakistan.

The Afghanistan Cricket Board subsequently cancelled all proposed fixtures between the countries, saying “no agreement of friendly matches is possible between both parties”.

The PCB responded by denying permission for cricketers such as Babar Azam, Umar Akmal and Kamran Akmal to play in the Twenty20 tournament despite being picked by franchises at last week’s auction.

“The PCB announces that none of the players and officials (coaches) contracted to Afghanistan T20 league would be issued NOCs (no-objection certificates),” the Pakistan board said in a statement on Friday.

“No Pakistani player or official can feature in the league,” it added.

The fifth edition of the six-team Shpageeza Cricket League begins in Kabul on July 18.

Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; Editing by John O'Brien

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