In the ICC meeting that took place in London earlier this week, Dave Richardson, the CEO of the International Cricket Council (ICC), said that Afghanistan and Ireland both can be granted Test status in the near future for how they have made strides in international cricket.
Richardson stated: “It’s never wise to try and make a call too early, but certainly the applications of both are very well founded. They both, on the face of it, meet the majority, if not all, of the full member criteria that have been set.”
He also added that he is optimistic about Afghanistan and Ireland becoming the 11th and 12th Test playing nations respectively.
Warren Deutrum, the chief of Ireland Cricket, had expressed in January of 2012 that he aims to see his country gain a Test status by 2020. Over the past few years, the team has made great strides, especially in limited overs cricket. As for Afghanistan, their rise has not been anything short of magical. They have beaten some big team in the last two years their players performed very well during the IPL 10 as well. Recently, Afghanistan tied the ODI series with West Indies at 1-1, giving the hosts a run for their money.
The players of Afghanistan too had expressed their will to play the longest version of cricket at the highest level. And if ICC grants them a Test status, one can only expect the minnows to keep coming up on top year after year, for they boast of a lot of young talent. Besides, playing Tests will help both the teams improve their ODI cricket as well.
The final decision on this can be expected to come out in a few days when the last and final ICC meeting takes place. Until then, the two teams can prepare for their new journey already.
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