India host Afghanistan in their debut Test at Bengaluru on 14th June. As a new chapter beckons for debutantes Afghanistan, Indian stand-in Test wicketkeeper has lavished praise for the Afghanistan team. According to ICC, Karthik said,”Their journey has been an inspiration for international cricket. Everyone knows it’s a tough place and the turmoil that they are going through, but in spite of that they are able to inspire people with their performances.”

Karthik did not stop there, adding further he said, “They’re able to produce big players even in a tournament like the IPL (Indian Premier League). They have some key players who are producing some big performances for them. I’m happy to see a country like that doing so well in cricket. Today, they are household names in the few years they’ve played. It’s only going to get better. I genuinely hope they have the opportunity to play a lot of Test cricket.”

Ajinkya Rahane would be the stand-in captain, instead of regular team India captain Virat Kohli, who will not play as he is recovering from a neck injury.

Meanwhile, Afghanistan captain Asghar Stanikzai has already sent warning signals to the hosts by claiming that Afghanistan have better spinners than India. That is a massive statement to make considering Indian players are masters against spin and have world class spinners in their line-up as well, in the form of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Kuldeep Yadav.

Both the teams will rely heavily on their spin department. Afghanistan will also field a spin trio in all probability. Their three spinners could be Rashid Khan and Mujeeb ur Rahman, who are certainties and Nabi could play the third spinner. It is also likely that considering the turn Indian pitches generate, both teams would not like to bat 4th. So, the team winning the toss would like to bat first.