A Test of nerves for Afghanistan in debut against India

A Test of nerves for Afghanistan in debut against India

Now the country is producing world-beaters like 19-year-old spinner Rashid Khan.

In spite of having somewhat of a torrid time in the recently-concluded Indian Premier League (IPL) for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, Navdeep Saini has been added to the Indian Test squad that will face-off against Afghanistan in a historic one-off Test match that will be played in Bengaluru on the 14th of June. "But I'm sure his professionalism will help him adjust and he will come out well", coach Phil Simmons said. Indian Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Rathore shook hands with Afghan players before the match and read out a congratulatory statement from Modi.

It was just the other day that Afghanistan captain, Asghar Stanikzai, claimed that his team's spinners were better than India's.

"Great preparation for the Test match against India - the morale is high", Stanikzai said.

The BCCI today congratulated Shikhar Dhawan for becoming the first Indian cricketer to score a century before lunch on the opening day of a Test. The Test might be of massive significance to Afghanistan, being their first and all, but to India this is more of a chance to give their Test regulars a chance to get some game-time before leaving for the much-hyped series in England. The routine of trying to push through variations - googlies, knuckle balls, arm balls - and invariably landing them short meant more easy runs through the second session for the pair, who had both had indifferent tours of South Africa earlier this year.

"But if you see the India team, all of the players are Virat Kohli for us". Afghanistan ought to have been mere pushovers for this India juggernaut, but if rumour mills are anything to go by, the Ajinkya Rahane-led unit aren't taking their neighbours lightly.

Good form is invaluable, irrespective of the format.

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Here we take a look at the factors working in favour of Afghanistan ahead of their inaugural Test.

They have also been part of four Twenty20 World Cups.

Dhawan bludgeoned the rookie Afghan bowlers into submission with a power-packed unbeaten 104 (91 balls) while Murali Vijay (41 no off 72 balls) held one end up with the home team and laid the foundation for what promises to be a mammoth first innings total.

"We will try to play good cricket". The Taliban, now fighting to depose Ghani's US -backed government and reimpose sharia, declined to comment on the match. We had dignitaries from both the countries witnessing the game and many more following it across the globe.

How well Shahzad, Mohammed Nabi negotiate Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja will have a direct impact on the kind of fight Afghanistan will be able to put on.

Dhawan looked in sublime touch right from the start, punishing the pace duo of Yamin Ahmadzai and Wafadar for glorious boundaries before sending his Sunrisers Hyderabad teammate Rashid Khan to the cleaners.

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