Afghanistan will unleash their one-man army or spin weapon Rashid Khan in full force in their maiden Test against India beginning on June 14 at Bengaluru. Afghanistan are coming off a 3-0 T20I series win over Bangladesh and would be confident taking on the No 1 Test team in the world. At best, Afghanistan can give India a scare in the Test match.
India will have a challenge at their hands though. They will have to tackle Afghanistan spin threat, mainly leg-spinner Rashid Khan.
The 19-year-old was the joint second highest wicket-taker in IPL 2018 and took 8 wickets in the 3-0 T20I series win over Bangladesh. So, India would have chalk out a strategy to handle Rashid Khan’s spin threat.
Here are some tips for Team India to counter Rashid Khan.
Play out Rashid Khan’s spell
Chennai Super Kings showed great strategic moves to play out Rashid Khan’s spell in IPL 2018 final and not gift him any wickets. That moved paid off as CSK managed to counter Rashid’s threat and win the title. Rashid Khan went wicketless in the IPL 2018 final.
In the Test, Afghanistan will make Rashid Khan bowl in short spells so that the threat is there all the time. Rashid Khan will, however, continue to be a threat with his variations. It will be best for India to play him out and score runs off other bowlers.
Don’t gift him wickets
Rashid Khan is most dangerous when he takes a wicket. And then he can run through a batting line-up. The best strategy will be to block him out if Rashid manages to make a breakthrough. Indian batsmen should not look to bat him out of the attack or pay the price of losing wickets in heap.
Score runs off other bowlers
It would be wise to play out Rashid’s overs and score runs against other Afghan bowlers. Even if it means Indian batsmen play out one maiden over after another off Rashid Khan. Afghanistan’s back-up bowling attack is bit weak and Indian players can score off them.