IND vs AFG: India opt to bat in Afghanistan's debut Test

16 June 2018, 05:45 | Kristine Mills

LIVE: Afghanistan begin historic test | cricket.com.au

Karun Nair India Ranji Trophy

One of the catalysts for that success was a debutant.

For Afghanistan, it will be a fresh test of fitness, endurance and patience, having made a mark in the limited-overs formats.

As Afghanistan gear up to face India in their inaugural Test match, all cameras are zoomed in on them.

In Kabul, diplomats from cricket-playing nations and Afghan officials gathered at the Indian embassy to watch the cricket.

Rahane himself has had a tumultuous year. "I have been batting well, in the Tests against Sri Lanka and then in the IPL, too". Regardless of how they fare, the newcomers were the least likely of the associates who were expected to make it to the Test ranks, unlike Ireland, given Test status with them, who were knocking on the doors of ICC for some time. With injury once again sidelining Kohli, it will be fascinating to see how Rahane approaches this assignment. Afghanistan has achieved a lot in world cricket in the past few years, they have managed to play in World T20 regularly since 2010, have qualified for the 50-over World Cups in 2015 and will play in the next edition as well. "It's like any other Test match for us. It's an honour for me as well to be captain in this match". But Rahane had no interest in getting into a public debate on the matter.

"We are going to focus on our strengths, our positives. We expected Jadeja, Ashwin, Kuldeep", Simmons said. "On that given day, it's important what is your mindset and how to handle pressure".

"I believe all spinners in this contest will be excellent".

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"Right now, Rashid is the most hard bowler to play against".

In a tweet on Wednesday, Modi said. He did well. Fortunately for us, we have Afsar, who has been our four-day keeper.

"Today cricket is unifying force for the people of Afghanistan, India takes pride in being shoulder-to-shoulder with Afghanistan in this journey", the message read.

It is a common perception that Afghanistan may not be well prepared for the Tests as they are coming here after a successful T20 series against Bangladesh in Dehradun last week. The one factor that make them a plausible threat to all teams playing them across formats. Certainly, there will be a bit of disappointment among players at not being on the same field as Virat. "Whereas Afghanistan, which has suffered terrorism, has exported talented players, and the Indian people and the government are welcoming their participation..." He added that his batsmen were well equipped to handle India's bowlers.

The pace department will be boosted by the experience of Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav.

The wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik was run out on a close review after chasing a quick single when on four, as India got through to stumps at 347 for six.



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