Afghanistan knock on Test door

June 21, 2017
Kieran Powell (second left) caught off Rashid Khan Arman during the second one-day international match between West Indies and Afghanistan at Daren Sammy Cricket Ground, Gros Islet, St Lucia on Sunday June 11.



Afghanistan believe their impressive recent outing against West Indies has further emboldened their chances of achieving Test status.

The ICC Associate side were brilliant in the three-match One-Day International series in the Caribbean earlier this month, stunning the hosts by 63 runs in the opening match at the Darren Sammy Cricket Ground in St Lucia.

West Indies were then forced to labour before overhauling a modest 136 to clinch a four-wicket in the second match while the third game was rained out.

"West Indies is one of the best teams in the shorter format of the game, and it's a Test-playing nation," Afghanistan coach Lalchand Rajput said.

"Beating them in the first game gave us a lot of self-belief that we belong at this level."

The International Cricket Council meet here this week and are expected to mull over the inclusion of Afghanistan and Ireland as the 11th and 12th Test sides.

Afghanistan have pressed their case strongly over the last year with victory in the Intercontinental Cup over Ireland in March, and one-day wins over the Irish, Zimbabwe and Scotland.

Afghanistan Cricket Board chairman, Atif Mashal, said achieving Test status would be a major boost, not just for the cricket fraternity in Kabul but for the entire nation.

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