Dhawan ton puts India in control in Afghanistan's test debut

Dhawan ton puts India in control in Afghanistan's test debut

India's 23-year-old left arm unorthodox leg spinner Kuldeep Yadav alone has played 24 first-class matches, including two tests against Australia and Sri Lanka. Before this feat, five others foreign players have achieved this feat but no Indian has done it.

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.

Afghanistan, who have been forced to train in India since 2015 because of the conflict at home, have just secured a T20 series sweep over Bangladesh with teen sensation Rashid Khan now an global star.

The left-hander has scored over 100 runs in a session before, though, doing so against Australia on debut in Mohali in 2013, and then against Sri Lanka in Galle previous year. For the moment, the focus is very much on Bengaluru, and a landmark occasion. We are not taking them lightly at all.

But Stanikzai said they are determined to show their rise to a Test nation less than two decades after being recognised by the International Cricket Council in 2001 is merited.

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While this might be a new territory for the Afghans, they've slowly seeped their way into Indian cricket: from Rashid Khan's virtuosity in the IPL to adopting Greater Noida as their second home, Afghanistan Cricket has evolved since being humbled on their first encounter against India, in the World T20 in 2010. It was Dhawan's 7th Test century in 30 matches.

The lack of incision in the pace department could also haunt Asghar Stanikzai's men as they hope to usurp the Indians.

The live telecast of India's one-off Test match against Afghanistan will start at 9am on June 14th (Thursday) in Bengaluru. Here we discuss that one humungous strength, their weaknesses, opportunity and threats in this SWOT analysis. I am really happy for them, we really worked hard to get to this position, and hopefully they carry forward the hard-work.

Having played global games in Noida and Dehradun, along with countless IPL matches, should make the conditions they will face in Bangalore familiar to the Afghanistan players. We are not thinking about Afghanistan as well: "yes, we respect them as our opponent but it's important for us to go out there and give more than our 100 per cent", said the batsman. It takes pressure off other bowlers and they can concentrate on their jobs.

"Getting back to Test cricket from (Twenty20) is all about tuning your mind rather than focusing on your skills", Rahane said. We know that right now, Rashid [Khan] is the most hard spinner to play.