Indian spinners Ravi Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, who took 11 wickets between them, gave Afghanistan a harsh lesson in top-level cricket when they were bowled out twice in 67 overs in their inaugural Test match.
Twenty-four wickets went down on day two in a humiliating start to the Afghan’s Test history after they were given the highest status by the ICC in June last year. They were dismissed for 109 and 103, with no batsman scoring more than 36 (Hashmatullah Shahidi). In the first innings, the highest score was 24.
India’s innings had been wrapped up 27 overs into the day for the addition of 127 runs, with Hardik Pandya rushing to a quick 71 to further inflate the scoreline after they resumed play ay 347-6. India were scoring at over six an over for the final 10 overs.
Whatever hopes the Afghans entertained of even remotely matching that were shattered by the Indian pacemen Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav, who took three of the first four wickets for 35 runs after a needless run-out had sent back Mohammad Shahzad.
Then Ashwin stepped up to rip out the middle-order, taking 4-27 in eight straight overs. Of the 109 runs accumulated, 78 came from 18 fours and a six. Opener Shahzad scored three fours in his 14 off 18 balls, and Mujeeb ur Rahman closed the innings with two fours and a six, showing the Afghans have yet to rid themselves of their one-day mentality.
The resistance was even weaker in the second innings as Sharma and Yadav crushed the top order and exposed the tail to the spinners. This time it was Jadeja’s slow left-armers that did the damage, taking 4-17 off nine overs to go with his two from the first innings.
Shahidi and Asghar Stanikzai (25) put up token resistance to take the score from 24-4 to 61-5, but that was but a minor irritation to the Indians.
Photo: Courtesy BCCI