The participants in the first ACC Level I Coaching Course in Afghanistan

National captain Nawroz Mangal and former captain Raees Ahmadzai were among the prominent candidates in the first ACC Level I coaching program held in Kabul recently. 21 of Afghan’s foremost aspiring coaches under the tutelage of ACC Development Officer Iqbal Sikander went through the ABCs of teaching cricket. “It was nothing they did not know, you have some international cricketers there, who’ve played against the best in the world, what was gratifying was that all of them simply worked hard, did all the drills, answered and asked all the right questions and had the passion for the game that you like to see in coaches,” says Iqbal.

With the first snows of winter already falling in the mountains behind Kabul, this was the last possible opportunity for these coaches to be accredited this year. All 21 of the candidates passed. “Which is unusual. On no course do we find that everyone passes yet these coaches did, which is full credit to them,” explains Iqbal. National player Karim Sadiq and former player Dawlat Ahmadzai along with the former manager of the national team Bashir Stanikzai and current U-19 manager Sher Agha Hamkar were also on the course. Two ladies, one of them Diana Barakzai who has been active in Afghan women’s cricket for some time, have also been accredited as Level I coaches.

Nawroz Mangal gets down to business

At the same time as the coaches, a new group of umpires under ACC Resource Person Mahboob Shah took part in a four-day Level I program. Iqbal Sikander and Mahboob Shah met with ACB Chairman and Afghanistan Finance Minister Dr. Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal in Kabul during their stay, Iqbal reporting that the administration of the game in Kabul is on a much better level than before, with guidelines and targets in place for all those running the game.

The ACB Chairman with Iqbal Sikander and Mahboob Shah in Kabul, October 2011

“Afghanistan has achieved great success in the past five years with a certain group of players. Now the time has come, as they near the end of their playing careers for a new generation to emerge. What these Afghan stars have done in learning how to teach will undoubtedly help a lot more cricketers in the years ahead,” says the former Pakistan international.

Afghanistan Cricket Profile

Filed November 8th, 2011