India vs Afghanistan Test: Ajinkya Rahane promises ruthlessness

India vs Afghanistan Test: Ajinkya Rahane promises ruthlessness

India vs Afghanistan Test: Ajinkya Rahane promises ruthlessness

Afghanistan President, Ashraf Ghani said on Thursday the national cricket team was a source of pride to the war-torn country, as they take on India in a historic one-off Test match and he urged other cricketing nations to take on the team.

Afghanistan have become one of only 12 nations sanctioned to play Tests, the five-day format considered cricket´s peak, after defying heavy odds to emerge as a force in the game.

The Indian team will be led by Ajinkya Rahane in the absence of regular captain Virat Kohli, who is resting, and are overwhelming favourites.

The Afghans were granted one-day global competitive status by the ICC in 2009, but the rigors of cricket's five-day Test format will be new to the Afghan players, making India the overwhelming favorite in the match. Last year, Australia's opener David Warner scored 100 not out before lunch against Pakistan.

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. "Best wishes to both teams", he wrote.

Afghanistan recently acquired test status and will play its first test match against India in Bangalore on June 14-18.

Afghanistan's captain Asghar Stanikzai said morale among team members was good and they were positive. that no disrespect to Afghanistan though.

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India will field an under-strength side in the one-off test as they have one eye fixed on the long worldwide schedule ahead.

As government officials here said, India has been associated with the development of cricket in Afghanistan since 2001 when Afghanistan joined ICC.

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Afghanistan showcased better control with the ball in the final session and the scoring rate came down to 4.4 by stumps.

India's Hotstar service will also live stream the Test match in that country. Skill-wise it won't make a difference, but our attitude matters, if you have to make a quick switch in terms of mindset from T20 to Test cricket. In March, the teenager became the fastest bowler to reach 100 one-day global wickets, and is now the world's top-ranked Twenty20 bowler.

While the star-studded bowling line-up has hogged most of the limelight, the Afghans would expect their batsmen to contribute equally if they hope for a dream start to their Test journey.

And yet still the Afghans seemed determined to enjoy themselves, none more so than Mohammad Shahzad, the portly opening batsman establishing himself as a firm favourite with the Indian crowd for his whole-hearted efforts in the field.

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