Afghanistan have announced that Umar Gul is the new bowling coach of the national men’s cricket team.
The former Pakistan international will begin his new role during the white-ball tour of Zimbabwe in June, when Afghanistan will play three ODIs followed by a further trio of T20Is in Harare.
Gul’s appointment comes after a successful stint as a bowling consultant at an Afghanistan’s training camp in April.
The 39-year-old made 237 international appearances for Pakistan across formats, making a particularly notable impact in the white-ball game, taking 179 wickets in 130 ODI matches and bagging 85 in 60 T20Is with a miserly career economy of 7.19.
Gul was the top wicket taker at the ICC T20 Cricket World Cups in both 2007 and 2009, and is seventh in the all-time list for wicket-takers in T20 Internationals.
Of the six players above him, only Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan can better Gul’s average of 16.97 or strike rate of 14.1.
Gul’s first job will be to steer Afghanistan’s bowlers through a three-match ICC Cricket World Cup Super League series against Zimbabwe as they push towards automatic qualification for the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023.
Afghanistan are fifth in the Super League Standings having won seven of their nine matches to-date, while opponents Zimbabwe are above only Netherlands at the foot of the table.
A three-match T20I series follows the 50-over matches, with Afghanistan continuing their preparation towards the ICC T20 World Cup later this year, for which they are one of eight teams already confirmed in the Super 12.
ODI squad: Hashmatullah Shahidi (c), Rahmat Shah (vc), Azmatullah Omarzai, Farid Malik, Fazal Haq Farooqi, Ibrahim Zadran, Ikram Alikhail (wk), Mohammad Nabi, Mujib ur Rahman, Najibullah Zadran, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Rashid Khan, Riaz Hassan, Shahidullah Kamal, Yamin Ahmadzai, Zia ur Rahman Akbar
Reserves: Noor Ahmad, Nijat Masoud
T20I squad: Mohammad Nabi (c), Najibullah Zadran (vc), Afsar Zazai (wk), Azmatullah Omarzai, Darwish Rasooli, Farid Ahmad Malik, Fazal Haq Farooqi, Hazratullah Zazai, Ihsanullah Janat, Karim Janat, Nijat Masoud, Noor Ahmad, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Rashid Khan, Sharafuddin Ashraf and Usman Ghani
Reserves: Zahir Khan, Sayed Ahmad Shirzad
4 June – 1st ODI, Harare Sports Club, Harare
6 June – 2nd ODI, Harare Sports Club, Harare
9 June – 3rd ODI, Harare Sports Club, Harare
11 June – 1st T20I, Harare Sports Club, Harare
12 June – 2nd T20I, Harare Sports Club, Harare
14 June – 3rd T20I, Harare Sports Club, Harare
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