Ajinkya Rahane has insisted Afghanistan will feel the wrath of a ‘ruthless’ India side when they meet in their inaugural Test match.
Afghanistan are all set to officially become the latest newcomers to the five-day international format when play begins in Bangalore on Thursday, and stand-in skipper Rahane was adamant complacency would not be a factor in from of a home crowd.
“We are not going to take Afghanistan lightly. They have a decent team, their bowlers are good,” AFP reported in an interview with Rahane, who takes over captaincy duties from Virat Kohli due to a neck injury.
“As a Test team we cannot take anyone for granted because cricket is a funny game. We want to go out there and be ruthless.
“We are going to focus on our strengths, our positives. We are not thinking about Afghanistan. Yes, we respect them as our opponent but it’s important for us to go out there and give more than our 100 per cent.”
Afghanistan take their next step as a nation under the solid footing of strong ODI performances dating back to 2009, and heading to their second Cricket World Cup next year in England.
In teenage spinners Rashid Khan and Mujeeb ur Rahman, both playing in England later this summer for counties, Afghanistan possess two emerging talents capable of becoming global icons.
Yet, Rahane sat India are more than happy with their own frontline spinners Ravi Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja.
“Every member of their team believes that their side is good, that their bowling attack or batting unit is better,” Rahane said.
“We all know the stats but we don’t focus on them. Our spinners, Ashwin, Jadeja and Kuldeep are experienced and quality spinners.”
This article was brought to you by The Cricket Paper, the UK's best-selling cricket publication, on-sale every Sunday.
To subscribe to The Cricket Paper CLICK HERE
Editorial Offices: 020 8971 4333
Jon Couch, Executive Editor
020 8971 4336 firstname.lastname@example.org
Adam Ellis, Digital Editor
ADVERTISING AND MARKETING
Sam Emery, Head of Sales
020 8971 4337 email@example.com
Neil Wooding, Trade Marketing Manager
020 8971 4339 firstname.lastname@example.org