Afghanistan have become the 38th country to be granted Associate membership of the ICC after the decision was made at the governing body’s annual conference in London on Friday.
ESPNcricinfo reported that Afghanistan’s nomination was sent by the Asian Cricket Council last year keeping in mind the country’s progress in the sport.
"Afghanistan is the only country that receives the Associate membership in a short period of time in reward to the efforts Afghanistan made for the promotion of cricket," Dr Noor Muhammad, CEO of the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB), said on the ACC website.
The important benefits of being granted Associated memberships are more exposure to cricket for the fans and a rise in funding from USD 7,00,000 to USD 8,80,000.
War-torn Afghanistan won may hearts when they almost qualified for the 2011 World Cup, missing out after a loss to Canada and failure to better Kenya’s rate, after having become an affiliate member in 2001.
But ICC rewarded the performance by granting them ODI status till 2013.