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India vs Afghanistan: We have better spin attack than India, says Afghanistan captain Asghar Stanikzai
Afghanistan are all set to make their Test debut when they face India from June 14 in one-off Test in Bengaluru.

  Afghanistan are all set to make their Test debut when they face India from June 14 in Bengaluru in a one-off Test match and captain Asghar Stanikzai made a bold statement by saying that their spin attack is better than India.

“The whole world knows that [we have very good spinners in] Rashid Khan, Mujeeb [Ur Rahman], [Mohammad] Nabi, Rahmat [Shah], Zahir [Khan],” Stanikzai, the Afghan skipper, told ESPNcricinfo. “In Afghanistan, the brilliant thing is that a lot of the young talent that is coming through are spinners, because they all follow Rashid, they follow Nabi, so because of that our spin department is very strong from below. “In my opinion, we have good spinners, better spinners than India,” Stanikzai said.

Wicket-keeper batsman Mohammad Shahzad also showed confidence in his side’s spinners and suggested that they can give tough competition to the Indin team.

“It can definitely happen,” Shahzad said. “You know what our spinners have been doing of late. Ireland played their [first Test] match against Pakistan, in Ireland’s conditions, and gave them a tough time. We are coming here and playing in India’s conditions, and that too against a team that plays spin very well. We will have a tough time, for us and for them too. It won’t be easy for either team. It will be a good match, Inshallah,” Shahzad said.

“Not just India, but even if you look at the whole world, our Rashid Khan is the No. 1 spinner,” Shahzad said. “You can match him up against any bowler, and you’ll say, ‘yes, he’s better than him’, or ‘he’s as good as him. Mujeeb, Rashid, Nabi we also have Zahir Khan, who didn’t get to play for Rajasthan [Royals], but he’s also one such bowler – you’ll see next year [in the IPL], so Alhamdulillah we have very good spinners,” he added.

Coach Phil Simmons hailed Rashid Khan’s ability and how the leggie has made his name in world cricket. “I don’t know about better than India,” Simmons said. “I think Rashid is at a different level now, if he keeps improving, but we haven’t seen him that much in Test cricket. Well, we haven’t seen him at all in Test cricket, but in four-day cricket we haven’t seen him that much. So it’s a new frontier for him. I’m sure he will conquer it, but whether he will conquer it in the first game, we’ll have to see.”

Mohammad Nabi who is himself an off-spinner appreciated Rashid’s capability and said, “He’s totally different from other legspinners,” Nabi said. “He’s quicker in the air. When he bowls the wrong’un and the legbreak, it looks same when you play, and the most important thing is that the hand is very quick. Can’t judge easily.”



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