The KFC BBL’s cadre of Afghanistan stars will leave Australia this week ahead of the country’s one-day international (ODI) series against Ireland in the UAE.
Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi and Mujeeb ur Rahman have all been named in their country’s 16-man squad that will face Ireland in three ODIs from January 21.
That series had already been pushed back by several days due to visa issues for the UAE, where matches will be played, but the time has come for the Afghans to depart for national duties, Cricket Australia reported.
Adelaide Strikers stalwart Rashid, the national vice-captain, will play his final match of BBL|10 on Monday night against the Melbourne Stars in Adelaide, which will also be his 50th appearance for the club.
“When your national team needs you, you have to go and do your duties, but at the same time I will miss playing with my blue brothers,” Rashid said on Sunday.
“Of course, I love everything about Adelaide and playing for the Strikers, it is such a beautiful place and ground and all the fans have been wonderful since I started here four years ago.
“I wish my team-mates well for the rest of the tournament and hopefully we will make finals and go further than that.”
The Brisbane Heat meanwhile hope to still have Mujeeb for one more fixture on Thursday against the Melbourne Renegades.
“It looks like the Renegades game will be the last one for Mujeeb,” Heat coach Darren Lehmann said.
“It’s been wonderful having him again and we believe his bowling has gone to a new level this summer.”
Mujeeb claimed career best and club record figures of 5-15 against the Hobart Hurricanes last week and has taken 12 wickets so far this season for the Heat at 14.33 and an economy of 6.61, cricket.com.au reported.
The Melbourne Renegades have already lost Nabi who has departed Australia en route to Abu Dhabi for national duty.