Aussie-Afghan clash to create history in Sharjah

First ODI to played over two days at record-setting venue

The forthcoming Australia-Afghanistan one-day international match, to be held at the Sharjah stadium on August 25, will be the first ever to be played over two days, thus creating history of sorts at the most decorated cricket venue.

The match, which will be a record 205th at the stadium, begins at 6pm to avoid the searing afternoon heat and finish at around 1.45am the next day if it goes the full distance.

Being held under the auspices of the Emirates Cricket Board, the match will provide a great opportunity for the Afghanistan team to showcase their skills to the world at the historic venue, which has already entered the Guinness World Records for staging the maximum number of ODI games.

In fact, the Sharjah Cricket Stadium has been the home ground for the Afghanistan national team for ODIs and first-class matches for the past four years, but it will be the first time they will take on Australia, arguably one of the best sides in the world.

Expected to be a complete-sell out affair, the match will set the tone for the high-profile Australia-Pakistan series which will follow soon after.

Two matches of the series, presented by by Bank Al Falah for the Cool and Cool Cup, will be played at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on August 28 and September 3.

“The matches will have already created a global buzz and we look forward to welcoming the teams for what we believe will be absorbing contests,” said Waleed Bukhatir, vice-chairman Sharjah Cricket Club.

“Afghanistan, in particular, have shown great improvement and it will be interesting to watch how they tackle the might of Australia. Whatever the outcome, the experience of playing against a top-ranked team will go a long way in honing the competitive edge of the Afghanistan team," he added.

“We are grateful to HE Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, chairman of ECB, for all his initiatives in supporting cricket. Today, the Sharjah Cricket Stadium is a household name and we do expect to host more such international games in the near future,” said Bukhatir.

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