The Aussie vs Afghan cricket test match is facing serious doubt after the Taliban’s latest sporting regulations to ban women from sports.
The age-old test match between the two countries will not proceed unless Afghan women are allowed to play the sport.
The recent Taliban takeover has seen many disturbing changes for Afghan women and the way they are able to live. Under the new regime and Taliban regulations, women would be banned from cricket as it is “not necessary”.
Deputy head of cultural commission Ahmadullah Waiq says the reasoning behind this ban would be the compromise to the covering of women’s faces and bodies:
“It is the media era, and there will be photos and videos, and then people watch it. Islam and the Islamic Emirate do not allow women to play cricket or play the kind of sports where they get exposed.”
Cricket Australia has spoken out, confirming their withdrawal from the test match if these reports eventuate to action.
“Cricket Australia would have no alternative but to not host Afghanistan for the proposed test match”
An update on the proposed Test match against Afghanistan ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/p2q5LOJMlw
— Cricket Australia (@CricketAus) September 9, 2021
The test match is set to be played on 27 November in Hobart.
The results of the Afghanistan Cricket Board reports will determine the likelihood of this.
Cricket Australia supports equality for women within the Aussie-loved sport and has stated, “driving the growth of Women’s cricket globally is incredibly important (to them).”
This however is not the case in the newly established Taliban cricket community with the men’s team are already receiving open support from the group.
The Taliban will forbid women in Afghanistan from playing cricket and other sports, a senior official said.https://t.co/RQnJr5MuCi
— NPR (@NPR) September 8, 2021
It is a rule within the International Cricket Council that all 12 Full test match Members must have a national women’s team. Without the inclusion of a female team, members are not considered “Full” and can be excluded from test matches.
As a result, the ICC has told SBS that Afghanistan’s status as a Full Member would be discussed at the next board meeting.
However, doubts loom following SBS reports last week that many of the women’s team members were hiding from the Taliban in Kabul.