Samiullah Shenwari: Afghanistan is dreaming of playing Test cricket

Samiuallah Shenwari led a spirited Afghanistan by scoring 96 before falling just when victory was in sight for his team in their World Cup 2015 match against Scotland. Shenwari talks about his innings and the game after his team’s historic win. (ICC Cricket World Cup 2015: Full coverage)

Q: Can you take us back to what you were thinking when obviously you came in at two down, and saw all the wickets fall? What was going through your mind all throughout?

Samiullah Shenwari (SS): I did my job, and my job was just staying on the wicket till the end. Some of the other players didn’t take the responsibility, that’s why they’re out. I was just telling them just stay on the wicket. My role was to be in there till 50th over, and use the last five over for the hits.

Q: How did you feel when you were caught on the boundary? I saw you waited for a while. They were checking the fielders how many were in and how many were out. It must have been very intense?

I didn’t check. From the outside they were shouting to stay on the wicket. But it was a bad shot for me.

Q: What was the winning after you won the match?

We shouted. Then the coach came and asked us to calm down. He said it’s just one match. There are two more matches to win.

Q: Did you ever imagine Afghanistan winning the World Cup would be possible 10 years ago?

Eight-ten years ago there was nothing in Afghanistan. But now you can say the streets, school, everywhere you go, it’s just cricket and cricket. So, maybe, in the next 10 years maybe we can do.

Q: Is your dream now to play a Test Match?

Yes, yes! We dream to play Test cricket and we’re looking forward to playing against the Test-playing nations.

Q: You’re obviously a long way from home. But there is a fairly good bunch of Afghan supporters there in the crowd. Were you aware of them? If so, how much of a boost was that to see the flag and the noise?
SS: When we see our supporters, we are happy. We feel good.

Q: How do you refocus now with couple of tough games coming up?

We’re looking forward to the next match against Australia. Hopefully, we’ll give them a tough time. We will not give up easy. We’re looking forward to giving them a tough time and looking forward to winning the match.

Courtesy: ICC