Former India opener and Afghanistan head coach Lalchand Rajput has hailed the Board of Control for Cricket in India for agreeing to play a Test match with Afghanistan.
The BCCI and its Afghanistan counterpart, on Monday (December 11), agreed that Afghanistan would play their first Test match in India against the current world No.1 Test nation. The CEO of the BCCI, Rahul Johri, and the chairman of the Afghanistan Cricket Board Atif Mashal took to social media to confirm the news.
@ACBofficials and @BCCI have agreed that Afghanistan will play its first Test against India. The exact date and venue of the match will be shared in a joint press conference in due course. I personally thank BCCI board for the decision. @BCCI @ARG_AFG
— Atif Mashal عاطف مشعل (@MashalAtif) December 11, 2017
— Rahul Johri (@RJohri) December 11, 2017
Expressing his delight over the watershed moment for Afghanistan cricket, Rajput said the match would help Afghanistan not only to develop their game but also monetarily.
“It is good that they are playing their first Test against India. It will help them in all aspects, including the cricketing one and the monetary aspect. India has always been supportive to Afghanistan (in terms of cricket),” Rajput told PTI.
Rajput, who represented India in 4 One-Day Internationals and a couple of Tests, was the head coach of the Afghanistan cricket team before parting ways due to security concerns. He is currently the coach of Assam team.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan along with Ireland are the latest entrant in the Test cricket. The International Cricket Council in June this year gave Afghanistan and Ireland status of full members which made them the 11th and 12h Test-playing nations.
Hosting Afghanistan for their first-ever Test will not be the first time India has extended a helping hand to Afghanistan. In the past, India had allowed the war-ravaged nation to play its home games in the country. Earlier this year, Afghanistan had hosted Ireland in Greater Noida.
Moreover, Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi, two of Afghanistan’s cricketing stalwarts, got lucrative Indian Premier League contracts from Sunrisers Hyderabad in this year’s auction.
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