Afghanistan vs Ireland has become a common fixture in recent times but on this occasion, these two sides lock horns in the longest format of the game. So far in their brief cricketing history, both teams have played only one Test and lost them respectively. Thereby both the sides will be eager to secure a win in the one-off Test which begins on Friday in Dehradun.
Afghanistan, the ‘home’ side, are more aware of the conditions but Ireland were hardly perturbed by that in their T20I, ODI series prior to the Test. Afghanistan swept the T20I series and then drew the ODI series that followed.
Ireland pacer Boyd Rankin has said that bowling well against Afghanistan will put his team in a better spot to win the one-off Test. “I feel the bowlers did a pretty good job during the one-day series. Maybe we could have capitalized on good starts with the ball, but that’s one day cricket – there is time to rebuild the innings and they were allowed to play well at times,” he said.
But facing the Afghans in Indian conditions will be no easy task. Spin will be their potent weapon and all eyes will be on Rashid Khan. The Afghanistan Cricket Board Selection Committee dropped Mujeeb Ur Rahman and added chinaman bowler Zahir Khan Pakteen and medium fast bowler Sayed Ahmad Shirzad to Afghanistan’s Test squad.
“Both Zahir Khan and Sayed Shirzad have very good bowling records in First-class cricket and have played in the ICC Intercontinental Cup for Afghanistan. We were awaiting Zahir’s fitness report when announcing the initial 14-member Test squad and now that he is fully fit, we have decided to add him to the squad. Sayed Shirzad is added as an additional pacer in the squad to have another bowling option if needed.”
There’s a good chance one of the two youngest Test sides will get their maiden win this coming week. Will it be Afghanistan or Ireland?
Afghanistan’s squad: Asghar Afghan(captain), Mohammad Shahzad (wicket-keeper), Ihsanullah Janat, Javed Ahmadi, Rahmat Shah, Nasir Jamal, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Ikram Alikhail, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Wafadar Momand, Yamin Ahmadzai, Sharafudin Ashraf, Waqar Salamkhail, Zahir Khan and Sayed Shirzad.
Ireland’s Squad: William Porterfield(c), Paul Stirling, Andrew Balbirnie, Simi Singh, Kevin O Brien, Stuart Poynter(w), Lorcan Tucker, George Dockrell, James McCollum, Andy McBrine, James Cameron-Dow, Tim Murtagh, Boyd Rankin, Barry McCarthy, Stuart Thompson
When is the Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test?
Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test will begin on Friday, March 15.
Where is Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test?
Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test will be played at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium, Dehradun, Uttarakhand.
What time does the Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test begin?
Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test will begin at 9.30 AM. The toss will take place at 9 AM.
Which TV channels will broadcast the Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test?
Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test will be broadcasted on D Sport.
How do I watch online live streaming of Afghanistan vs Ireland one-off Test?
Afghanistan vs Ireland can be streamed on Rabbitholebd. One can also get live scores, updates and commentary on IndianExpress.com.