The Afghanistan cricket team is searching for a new coach and they might end up hiring yet another Indian coach. The current coach of Afghanistan team is India’s Lalchand Rajput and before him, it was Pakistan’s former skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq, who was considered to be one of the reasons for the country’s rise in the ICC rankings. According to TOI, India’s former national cricketer Mohammad Kaif has been approached for Afghanistan’s coaching position by Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB). The reports came out after a month of Rajput’s contract renewal.
As per reports, Kaif will be meeting with the top officials of the ACB, Chairman Shukrullah Atif Mashal, and CEO Shafiiqullah Stanikzai at the end of the month.
Kaif was one of the players who was a part of the cricket revolution of the previous decade under the captaincy of Sourav Ganguly. He and Yuvraj Singh significantly improved the fielding standards of the team. The 36-year-old has played 13 Test and 125 ODIs for India, and at one point he was irreplaceable in the middle order and dubbed as one of the best modern-day finishers. He has also scored 10,093 runs in First-Class cricket while playing for Chattisgarh.
He also played for Rajasthan Royals (RR), Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Indian Premier League (IPL). He recently worked with IPL franchise Gujarat Lions (GL) as their fielding coach. GL will not be playing in IPL 2018. As he is not bound by any IPL franchise in the coming seasons, it is likely that he will accept ACB’s proposal.
Afghanistan are currently in the 10th spot of ICC ODI Rankings ahead of teams like Zimbabwe and Ireland. They recently became eligible to play in Test matches. They did well in the T20 World Cup 2016 as they were the only team to beat West Indies in the tournament. With Kaif taking over as the coach, the future of Afghanistan cricket looks to be quite promising.