Ten years after India’s IPL changed the face of cricket the Afghanistan Premier League (APL) had joined the growing list of T20 tournaments worldwide. It was a proud moment for Afghanistan last year that added a dash of glamour with their inaugural Twenty20 league in the United Arab Emirates. But recently their cricket board (ACB) has decided to postpone the second season due to a conflict with Snixer Sports.
It was expected that the tournament will soon get rolled out in 2019 after its success last year. In the first season many big players like Chris Gayle, Shahid Afridi, Rashid Khan, and Brendon McCullum among others featured in it. The pyrotechnics weren’t long coming but 20-year-old Hazratullah Zazai’s extraordinary six sixes in one over drew everyone’s attention towards it.
What is the reason behind the postponement?
The reason behind terminating the league for one year was the inability of Snixer Sports to pay the complete rights fees of the first edition as per the fees and payment schedule of the agreement according to the ACB’s official website. Snixer Sports held the commercial rights of APL in 2018 but the ACB will not allow them to operate the league in the future.
ACB is in no good mood and has also announced that next year a tender will be issued for the sanctioning of rights for the league. They have also written to Attorney General’s Office of the Government of Afghanistan to fully investigate the administrative allegations of corruption in the league and are committed to ensuring transparency in all its affairs and are accountable to all stakeholders.
The first season of this league that was held in UAE during October 2018, had 5 teams named as Balkh Legends, Kabul, Zwanan, Kandahar Knights, Nangarhar Leopards, and Pakita Panthers. Out of these teams, Balkh Legends led by Mohammed Nabi lifted the trophy after beating Kabul Zwanan by 4 wickets.
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