At least three people, including a police officer, have been killed and a dozen injured in a suicide attack on the Alokozay Kabul International Cricket Ground in Afghanistan on Wednesday, local security forces confirmed.
At least two of the injured were police officers who attempted to prevent the attack, which took place during a T-20 match between Boost Defenders and Mis Ainak Knights as part of the Shpageeza Cricket League season that started on Monday.
The attack took place at around 15:45 local time about 500 metres from the stadium, news wires said. The bomber detonated his explosives after he was stopped at a security checkpoint by suspicious police as he walked towards the stadium, the Kabul police prefecture confirmed.
Security forces "prevented catastrophe"
"The security forces by sacrificing themselves have prevented the attacker from reaching the crowd [inside the stadium] and creating a catastrophe," police spokesman Basir Mujahid told AFP.
Afghanistan Cricket Board spokesman Farid Hotak told AFP the match was briefly interrupted and "all players and cricket board officials are safe".
Although the Shpageeza has been contested in Afghanistan for five years, this edition is the first time that foreign players have been involved with participants from the UK and Sri Lanka, among other nations.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, the latest in a series of deadly assaults in the city.