Afghanistan is all set to make their international Test debut against India at Bengaluru on June 14. Ahead of the much-anticipated Test, Afghanistan captain Asghar Stanikzai said that the team is well prepared for the match and that they are not nervous. However, Stanikzai admitted that his inexperienced squad faces a daunting task in the longest format of the game. “We are not feeling nervous,” Stanikzai said during a pre-match conference.
“We feel we are well prepared. Every player is thinking about how they can play their best match.”
“Yeah, it is a new format for the team but we have played in four-day matches. We have succeeded in our plans and we will look play this test the same way,” Stanikzai asserted.
Afghanistan was awarded full member status alongside Ireland in June last year. They will also become the 12th Test playing nation in less than two decades after being recognised by International Cricket Council (ICC) in 2001.
Afghanistan might be newcomers but their skipper Stanikzai believes that his spin-bowling arsenal, led by teen sensation Rashid Khan is far superior to the Indian trio of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, and Kuldeep Yadav.
India captain Ajinkya Rahane, on the other hand, said that it was an honour to face Afghanistan in their maiden test.
India are without regular captain Virat Kohli, who initially opted to play for the English county championship side Surrey in June but that did not materialise as he hurt his neck while fielding during the IPL.
First-choice wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha and paceman Mohammed Shami are also out of action with injuries.