Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Germany has given Afghanistan € 700,000 to build a new cricket stadium in the eastern province of Khost.
Despite there already being a multi-purpose sports centre in Khost, the decision to build a cricket stadium comes after the country united to cheer on the national team in the Asia Cup and World Twenty20.
It has been announced that the stadium will be constructed on 25 acres of land and will have a capacity of 6,000 people.
This is the second time a foreign country has given Afghanistan financial assistance to build a cricket stadium. Earlier this year, the Indian government announced that they would be giving Afghanistan $1 million to build a new stadium in the province of Kandahar.
“We are grateful to both India and Germany for their support,” Afghanistan Cricket Board chairman Shahzada Masoud told AFP. “But what we want now is for teams like India to come any play on our grounds. It would have been so exciting if Sachin Tendulkar had come and played in our country. I hope Mahendra Singh Dhoni can make it.”
Masoud also stated that he would love to see other cricketing nations touring Afghanistan and vowed to provide top-class security.
“I am telling the players to come to my country and play there, they will treasure those memories forever,” he said. “We want support from other nations. We had lots of problems in the last 30 years because of the uncertain security situation, but that needs to be erased from our minds and heart now.
“Because sport unites people. Cricket is one of our favourite sports. You get 20,000-30,000 people watching our local league matches. The security is good, especially for cricketers. We have achieved a lot in a short time, I don’t think anyone expected us to get this far. The future of cricket is bright in our country. It is played in 32 of our 34 provinces. And matches are shown on local television.”