India v Afghanistan: Test debutants rally after hosts dominate much of opening day

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan became the first Indian to hit a Test century before lunch with his 87-ball knock
First Test, M.Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore (day one):
India 347-6 (78 overs): S Dhawan 107, Vijay 105; Ahmadzai 2-32
Afghanistan: Yet to bat

Afghanistan's bowlers had some late success on the opening day of the country's Test debut against India.

India opted to bat first and dominated for much of the day, with opener Shikhar Dhawan becoming the sixth Test player to reach a century before lunch.

Dhawan put on 168 runs with Murali Vijay (105) in Bangalore before he was dismissed by Yamin Ahmadzai to hand Afghanistan their first Test wicket.

The visitors then took three wickets for 16 runs as India ended on 347-6.

Vijay was trapped lbw by Mujeeb ur Rahman, while Wafadar and Rashid Khan took a wicket apiece.

Dinesh Karthik was run out for four as Afghanistan rallied in the closing stages of the day.

Afghanistan's cricket board was formed in 1995 and the country became ICC associate members in 2013, before being awarded Test status in June 2017.


BBC Sport's Sam Sheringham in Bangalore

There was a great sense of occasion before the start of play here in Bangalore as the Afghan players were presented with framed Test caps and glad-handed by a host of dignitaries.

With their hands on their hearts and beaming grins across their faces, they then belted out their national anthem and soaked up their moment of history.

The smiles were soon wiped off their faces, though, as India opener Shikhar Dhawan took advantage of some palpable nerves from the Afghan bowlers to blast a stunning hundred before lunch.

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.

Following a couple of rain delays, the Afghans improved dramatically and it was their seamers rather than their much-vaunted spinners who made the initial breakthroughs, much to the delight of a few clusters of flag-waving Afghan supporters in the stands.

By the end of the day, however, leg-spinner Rashid Khan was showing exactly why he is one of the most exciting young cricketers in world cricket, taking the scalp of India captain Ajinkya Rahane and showing off his full array of magical deliveries as Test cricket's newcomers finished the day in the ascendancy.


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