Afghanistan was granted the Associate membership of the ICC, making it the eighth Asian nation and the 38th overall to get the status. Looking at the immense progress shown by Afghanistan, the ACC (Asian Cricket Council) had last year sent the nomination request in 2012 and the decision to grant Afghanistan the status was taken by the ICC at its ongoing annual conference, which concluded in London on 29 June 2013.
Afghanistan now join Hong Kong (1969), Kuwait (2005), Malaysia (1967), Nepal (1996), Singapore (1974), Thailand (2005) and UAE (1990) as ICC Associates from the Asian region.
The new Associate membership will help Afghanistan get more funds from the ICC and also give much-needed exposure to the team. The ICC is now likely to pay Afghanistan 850000 US dollars based on the Associate status, instead of 700000 US dollars as the annual fund.
From a country torn by war to a rising cricket playing nation, it has been a remarkable journey for Afghanistan, who became an Affiliate member of the ICC in 2001 when they travelled to Pakistan for their first tour.
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