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    ACB honours ex-captain Mangal

    KABUL (PAN): The cricket board on Monday felicitated ex-captain Nawroz Mangal and awarded the right-handed batsman, who bowls off break, a letter of appreciation in recognition of his contribution to the cricket in Afghanistan and several career-defining memorable performances.   

    Mangal, who captained Afghanistan for the last four years, was replaced on Sunday by Mohammad Nabi as the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) announced an 18-man squad for the ICC Intercontinental Cup beginning next month in the UAE.

    The former captain was honoured at a function arranged by the ACB. Presidential Advisor and Deputy ACB Chairman Shahzada Massoud and ACB chief executive handed Mangal an appreciation letter at the Sunday night function.

    Massoud remarked Mangal's contribution to the game was unforgettable, calling him an intelligent captain, who kept the team united and its morale high. The level of morale, Mangal had been able to maintain in the side, would be remembered for long by his team mates, he said.

    Born in Kabul November 28, 1984, Nawroz Khan Mangal spent much of his early years in refugee camps in neighbouring Pakistan, where he was introduced to cricket. After the end of Taliban rule in 2001, Mangal returned to the country. In the aftermath, the Afghanistan national cricket team was founded.

    Spotted by then coach Taj Malik, Mangal’s father tried to stop him playing, citing the sport as not being a living. But he made his debut for Afghanistan against Nowshehra in the 2001 Quaid-i-Azam Trophy (Grade II).

    He made his international debut for Afghanistan against Oman in the 2004 ACC Trophy. During the tournament, Mangal was Afghanistan's leading run scorer with 271 runs. It was the first time the team participated in the competition and they progressed to the quarter-finals where they lost to Kuwait.

    Mangal led the Afghan cricket team that in under a year won the World Cricket League Division Five, Division Four and Division Three, therefore promoting them to Division Two and allowing them to take part in the 2009 ICC World Cup Qualifier.

    In that tournament he led Afghanistan to 5th place and ODI status and promotion to World Cricket League Division One. Mangal led Afghanistan to victory over Scotland in their first ever ODI, with himself claiming the winning wicket of John Blain.

    He captained Afghanistan in their debut, and his debut first class match in the Intercontinental Cup against a Zimbabwe XI in which Afghanistan drew the match. Mangal has subsequently led Afghanistan to victories over the Netherlands and Ireland in the tournament. Mangal made his maiden first-class fifty against Ireland with a score of 84.

    In February 2010, Mangal made his Twenty20 International debut against Ireland, which Afghanistan lost by 5 wickets. Mangal led Afghanistan to victory in the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier with figures of 3/23 as Afghanistan defeated Ireland by 8 wickets in the final.

    Afghanistan's victory qualified them to take part in the 2010 ICC World Twenty20. Following the tournament, Mangal led Afghanistan to an astonishing victory over Canada in the Intercontinental Cup. Set 494 to win, Mangal shared a 163 run partnership with Mohammad Shahzad in which he contributed 70 runs to the partnership as Afghanistan won the match by 6 wickets.

    In April 2010, Mangal led the side to victory in the 2010 ACC Trophy Elite, where Afghanistan defeated Nepal in the final by 95 runs, with Mangal himself claiming the winning wicket of Rahul Vishvakarma.

    Mangal led Afghanistan into the 2010 ICC World Twenty20, despite the team losing to Test nations India and South Africa, the team won many plaudits from cricket figures. As of October 2010, Mangal has led Afghanistan to the top of 2009–10 ICC Intercontinental Cup in Afghanistan's first season of playing first-class cricket.

    He scored his maiden first-class century against Kenya in October 2010, making 168 runs before being run out by Elijah Otieno. His innings, along with the bowling of teammate Hameed Hasan, was instrumental in securing Afghanistan a 167 run victory.[7][8]

    In November 2010 it was announced that all-rounder Mohammad Nabi would captain Afghanistan in the 2010 Asian Games twenty20 tournament in China later that month.

    ACB released a statement that "We have played 16 one-day internationals but we could only win nine therefore we thought the burden of captaincy is too heavy on Nawroz and Nabi is the next best choice".

    After causing an upset by beating Pakistan in the semi-finals of the games, Afghanistan lost the final to Bangladesh and finished with a silver medal.

    nz/ma



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