Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said on Thursday the national cricket team was a source of pride to the war-ravaged country as it took on India in a historic first test match and he urged other cricketing nations to take on the team.
The bright red caps dotting the field made for a sharp contrast with the Test whites and the lush green of the M Chinnaswamy Stadium outfield in Bangalore of Indian on Tuesday morning as Afghanistan started its first ever Test. In the second session, Yamin Ahmadzai took the wicket of Shikhar Dhawan just after lunch to become the first bowler who took the test wicket for Afghanistan.
For the Afghans, Ahmadzai was the pick of the bowlers with a couple of wickets while Wafadar, Rashid and Mujeeb contributed with one wicket apiece.
Hardik Pandya, on 10, and Ravichandran Ashwin, on 7, were at the crease when play ended after an extended final session but only 78 overs were possible due to two rain interruptions.
41 out of 51 runs came from Dhawan's willow from just 27 balls he faced off Rashid's bowling, including 8 fours and a six.
Lokesh Rahul, batting on 44, then joined Vijay to continue India's momentum as they put on an unbeaten 96-run partnership for the second wicket.
Rashid could have immediately got his second Test wicket in the form of the risky Pujara, who on 30 was dropped at first slip by Mohammed Nabi.
Star Sports Network holds the broadcast rights of home matches of Indian Cricket Team.
Karthik has appreciated the spirit of Afghanistan players as he felt they have flourished themselves in conditions of turmoil. "May sports continue to bring our people closer and strengthen ties".
Afghan cricket grew out of refugee camps in Pakistan where many families were based after they fled conflict in the 1980s and 1990s. Glad that they have chosen to play the historic match with India.
Afghanistan was granted Test status in June a year ago along with Ireland and it was soon announced that they would play their first-ever Test against the number one Test side.
"It achieved the Test playing status past year".
Khan, the top T20 bowler in ICC rankings, took the Indian Premier League by storm with his 21 wickets for runners-up Sunrisers Hyderabad, and mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman also impressed in the cash-rich tournament. "My parents even forbid my siblings and I to play cricket outside our home", Khan, one of 12 children, said in a recent interview with Afghan media.
Only last month, an attack on a cricket match in Khan´s home city of Jalalabad killed eight people and wounded 45.
After impressive performances in the limited-overs formats, Afghanistan must be eager to prove they can stand the stresses of a five-day match.
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