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14-Jun-2018 13:11:00 GMT
Ind v Afg, Only Test, Bengaluru, day 1

Afghanistan fightback after Dhawan, Vijay tons

Bengaluru: Centuries from Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay helped India reach 347 for six at stumps on a rain-hit opening day of Afghanistan's debut Test in Bangalore on Thursday.

All-rounders Hardik Pandya (10 not out) and Ravichandran Ashwin (7 not out) survived a few scares before heading back undivided when the umpires dislodged the bails for the day, affected by two rain interruptions at the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium here.

Test cricket's newest team were on the receiving end of some aggressive batting as Dhawan, who smashed 107, and Vijay, who made 105, put on a 168-run opening stand after the hosts elected to bat first.

But Afghanistan's bowlers struck back in the final session.

Fast bowler Yamin Ahmadzai, who got his team's first Test scalp after getting Dhawan, took two wickets. Fellow paceman Wafadar, spin sensation Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman picked up a wicket each.

Hardik Pandya, on 10, and Ravichandran Ashwin, on 7, were at the crease when play ended after an extended final session but only 78 overs were possible due to two rain interruptions.

While India ruled the roost in most parts of the three sessions, Afghanistan had their moments in the second and final session with the wickets of Dhawan (107), and the quick dismissals of Vijay (105) and Lokesh Rahul (54) off consecutive overs.

Brief scores:
India 347 for 6 (Dhawan 107, Vijay 105, Rahul 54, Ahmadzai 2-32) v Afghanistan

Troubled by two rain breaks during which Vijay found himself stuck in the 90s, the Tamil Nadu opener kept his composure to notch up his 12th Test hundred in the final session.

Vijay hit pacer Wafadar for a four over point to bring up his ton and together with Rahul, who by then had registered his half century, forged a valuable 112-run stand for the second wicket.

With his 12th Test ton, Vijay also became the batsman with most first innings centuries without one in the second innings. But soon after reaching his century off 143 deliveries, Vijay found himself trapped leg before by Wafadar even as the review did not help his cause.

The visitors struck in the very next over when pacer Yamin Ahmadzai induced a faint inside edge off Rahul which uprooted his off-stick, and as a result brought Pujara and Rahane together.

Earlier, Dhawan had become the first Indian and sixth batsman overall to score a hundred in the first session of a Test. He looked in excellent flow, especially against the spinners, and reached his ton in 87 balls. He top-edged Yamin Ahmadzai, and Mohammad Nabi took a fairly simple catch at second slip to give Afghanistan their first Test wicket.

Yamin Ahmadzai scalped two wickets while Wafadar, Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman took one wicket each.


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