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Afghanistan to play their first ever Test later this year

Afghanistan are likely to host Zimbabwe for a full-fledged tour.


Bangladesh v Afghanistan - 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup
Afghanistan cricketers will don the whites soon

What's the story?

The Afghanistan cricket team are set to play their first ever Test match later this year. If everything goes according to the plans that are being developed, Afghanistan will host Zimbabwe for a full tour that will also comprise a Test match.

Since the Afghanistan Cricket Board cannot host international cricket in the country in the current scenario, the series is likely to take place in the United Arab Emirates or in India.

According to media reports, Zimbabwe Cricket approved of the series proposal by ACB in a conversation through email. A tour consisting of one Test, five ODIs and two/three T20Is is what the boards have primarily agreed upon.

In case you didn't know...

Afghanistan and Ireland were granted entry into the elite Test club by the International Cricket Council in June.

They became the 11th and 12th nations respectively to gain eligibility to play Test cricket and the first to make the transition in more than a decade.

The details

The Afghanistan-Zimbabwe tour is likely to be scheduled in November and run through December before the latter travel to Bangladesh for an ICC Futures Tour tri-series.

Also read: Bats, balls and bullets: The story of Afghanistan and its storied cricket team

The dates for the same will be finalised as soon as the schedule for the tri-series is announced.

What's next?

This series will be a huge boost for Afghanistan cricket and will truly help it take a step forward after being granted Test status recently.

The cricketers will look to prove themselves in the longest version of the game. A good performance in Test cricket will definitely help in the development of a wider cricketing infrastructure in the country.

Author's take

Afghanistan cricket's meteoric rise in world cricket has been heart-warming to witness. The cricketers have shown the will to compete and thrive at the highest level, while managing to bring joy to their war-torn country.

Giant strides like this will only help them rise further and inspire them to become more successful across all formats of international cricket.

ACB should also focus on trying to qualify for more ICC events to keep adding to the team's progress on the international front and help its cricketers scale new heights in the near future.

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