“50-over cricket is also important,” Shahidi said in Ahmedabad. “Right now, there are too many leagues, too much T20 cricket and I think 50-overs and Test cricket are more important. If we have those games, we will definitely improve more. We hope that our cricket board and the ICC will give us more matches.” for our improvement.”
Whatever happens, Afghanistan can look forward to at least some ODI cricket in the not-too-distant future. They cannot finish lower than sixth in this World Cup, guaranteeing them a place in the Champions Trophy in 2025 and the opportunity to play against the other seven best teams in the format.
South Africa, their last opponent in the group stage of this World Cup and fellow Champions Trophy qualifiers, also have doubts about the relevance of the 50-over format, especially since they will be co-hosting the next ODI World Cup in 2027 and they have reserved that tournament as theirs to win. They understand that in the four years between this tournament and the next, more T20 leagues are likely to emerge, offering more money than Cricket South Africa (CSA) can match, and players will inevitably be attracted to them at the expense of international cricket. . .
Nkwe hopes that this “new model”, as he called it, will encourage many of the current team members to continue to be available for the World Cups, particularly in 2027. “We hope that the majority of the star players will be available by 2027.” opportunity to finish his career at home, with the possibility of us winning it,” Nkwe said. “Star players are the majority of players who play in the leagues. David Miller, Quinny [de Kock]Career [van der Dussen]Teba [Bavuma] – Most of them are over 30 years old, but when I talk to them, they are very hungry for cutlery for South Africa. We are going to have to be realistic and do it year by year. “After the World Cup I would like to talk to them about the future.”
The main attraction, according to Nkwe, lies in the format itself because although there are ICC events every year, “this one (the ODI World Cup) is the main one,” he said. “They want this one.”
And from the looks of it, Afghanistan too.
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo’s correspondent for South Africa and women’s cricket