Indian voice in Sri Lanka- Afghanistan matches

4 June 2023 09:42 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


The ongoing three-match bilateral ODI series between Sri Lanka and Afghanistan in Sri Lanka has an India connection too. One of the five TV commentators is India’s renowned Devender Kumar. There have been no visiting commentators from Afghanistan, but Devender has insights into all Afghan players.

Speaking exclusively over the telephone from Hambantota, he says, “I have been commentating on Afghanistan international matches since 2017.

I have been to Kabul numerous times. I have been covering their Shpageeza cricket league over the
years from Kabul, Afghanistan. Some unknown international commentator recommended my name to the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) in the year 2017 in Sharjah for the Afghanistan vs. Ireland series in 2017 when Mujeeb ur Rahman made his debut. Since then, I have been regularly commentating on their matches.”

Devender has witnessed a near-death experience in the game in Afghanistan. “In 2017, I witnessed a blast near the stadium. It was a harrowing moment for all of us. I realised that a blast had occurred barely 10 yards away from where I was standing.” Despite the nightmarish turn of events, Devender decided not to curtail his visit and stayed back till the tournament was over.

“I am fascinated by the charm of the Afghanistan cricket story, the struggle involved, and how much cricket means to Afghan people.”

Devender is a full-time cricket and multiple sports commentator. He commentates on horse polo, tennis, kabaddi, table tennis, volleyball, badminton, handball, football, karate, and many other sports as well, with cricket and horse polo being his top priorities. He has done around 80 international cricket matches, including Test matches as well.

“I have not done a live commentary on the BBC as yet, but commentating on a Test Match Special
on the BBC is my childhood dream.” 

“Growing up as a kid, I heard a lot of commentaries from Sri Lanka on the radio, and it was my dream to visit Sri Lanka and do a live commentary. I am amazed by the beauty of Sri Lanka as a country and its wonderful people.”

“I feel great privilege commentating on the Sri Lanka vs. Afghanistan series because it’s a wonderful rivalry developing and the performances of both teams carry significant meaning in the lives of the common people of both nations,” he signed off.  Bipin Dani


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