Cricket triumph triggers frenzied celebrations across country
KABUL (Pajhwok): Thousands of people across the country on Thursday celebrated Afghanistan’s pulsating win over Zimbabwe in the five-match One Day International (ODI)series in the UAE.
Braving cold weather, frenzied Afghans thronged streets and roads in different cities, including Kabul, beating drums, performing their traditional dance called Atan and distrusting sweets and fruits.
Gulbadin Naib’s gutsy pinch-hitting powered Afghanistan to the sensational win over Zimbabwe in the last One-Day International (ODI) at the Sharjah International Cricket Stadium on Wednesday night.
With the two-wicket triumph in the hard-fought encounter, Afghanistan clinched the five-match series against the Test-playing Zimbabweans.
The winners, surviving early jitters, staged an incredible comeback to turn the tables on the opposition and end up among the top 10 in ODI rankings.
Many cricket-crazy Afghans in Peshawar sat glued to Geo Super TV channel, which telecast live the duel of fluctuating fortunes. They were entertained to an extraordinary display of aggressive batting.
Despite an Interior Ministry ban on celebratory fire, bursts gunshots rang out in Kabul and other major urban stations after the national team’s heroics. There have been no reports so far about casualties.
Near the Chaman-i-Hazoori Park and the Afghanistan Cricket Board headquarters in the capital, hundreds of excite people rejoiced the victory, which catapulted the national side among the top 10 in ODI rankings.
Shahidullah, who had come to the park from Kart-i-Naw area, told Pajhwok Afghan News: “The Afghans have few moments to enjoy. It’s our cricketers who bring us joy and pride.”
In Kandahar, thousands of youth danced late at night and motorists played songs in praised in praise of cricket. One young man Khan Ansari praised the team’s performance in Sharjah as epoch-making.
Elsewhere, thousands of youngsters gathered in Jalalabad to watch the event on a massive screen. Many thronged the Sherzai Stadium, while children, youth and the elderly walked through city streets.
Pajhwok correspondents reported similar festivities in Khost, Helmand, Zabul, Balkh and Laghman provinces. The participants extolled the national squad’s spirited performance as a moment of pride.
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