Photo Credit: Afghanistan Cricket Board
The 15th edition of the Wazir Mohammad Akbar Khan Provincial Grade II Tournament 2024, the first domestic cricket event of the year, is set to begin on January 18. The event features 37 provincial teams that are divided into 6 groups and will be played across six different venues in Khost, Nangarhar, Kunar and Kandahar provinces.
The tournament will be played in a one-day format with a total of 93 games to be played over 18 days, from January 18 to February 5. The 37 participating teams will be divided into 6 groups, with the first five groups having 6 teams each whereas the last group consisting of 7 teams.
Kunduz, Maidan Wardak, Khost B, Bamyan, Ghazni and Nooristan provinces are placed in Group A. Kandahar B, Parwan, Kabul B, Helmand, Nimroz and Uruzgan are the six other teams in Group B. Nangarhar C, Badakhshan, Paktia, Panjsher, Khost C, and Sar-e-Pol are included in Group C. Group D features Kunar, Baghlan, Kunduz B, Kapisa, Kabul C and Faryab provincial teams. Kandahar, Samangan, Farah, Paktika, Nangarhar B and Herat provincial teams are included in Group E whereas Group F is a seven-team group that is comprised of Khost, Balkh, Daikundi, Kabul D, Jozjan, Zabul and Takhar provincial teams.
All the participating teams will play once against the other teams in their group. The team with the most points in each group will advance to the Provincial Grade One Tournament, which is considered the top provincial one-day event organized by the Afghanistan Cricket Board and will take place soon after the completion of the Grade II event.
The tournament is significant for identifying new players and promoting the game in the country. Mr. Naseeb Khan, CEO of the Afghanistan Cricket Board, expressed his excitement for the tournament and its positive impact on the development of the sport in the country. He mentioned that the participation of 37 teams in the provincial competition is quite a promising sign and the efforts to spread the game to different parts of Afghanistan are nicely paying off.
The upcoming Wazir Mohammad Akbar Khan Provincial Grade II tournament is just the start of a packed year of cricket in Afghanistan. This event will be followed by the highly anticipated 12-team Grade One tournament set to take place in late February.
The Afghanistan Cricket Board is dedicated to promoting the game throughout the country and the success of these provincial tournaments is a testament to the organization’s efforts.