Afghanistan skipper Rashid Khan who will be leading the team in the tests said that – The confidence that is built up after the win against Ireland in the tri-national series, will take on to Bangladesh in the one-off Test match at Chittagong on 5th September.
Hosts will be taking on Afghanistan at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium that might bring a new being for Rashid Khan as well, considering that he was chosen to be the captain of the country across formats after the World Cup.
Early in 2017, Afghanistan obtained their Test status and later they were hit by India within two days in their opening Test in June 2018. They managed to come out with a great result in their second Test as they defeated Ireland by seven wickets to grab their maiden win in the longest format.
“You win against a lower team or against a higher team, winning always gives you confidence and energy. That’s what we got from the last game against Ireland. We had the good game batting wise, bowling wise and fielding wise, and that’s what winning gives you – full confidence,” – Rashid told.
“It was the first game for us and surprising for us to play a Test against India in India, and it looked like a dream for the whole country. That is something we didn’t quite control – our nerves and ourselves as well. In the next game, we were 80 to 90 percent better from the first game. So as I said, the more we play, the better side we will be. Both the teams have all the chances to win the game. Both the teams have skills and talent and experience.” – Rashid added.
Rashid made it clear that – Patience will play a key role in Test cricket and also added that he is confident that with each passing day, they will learn to have a mindset to play in the longer formats.
”Patience is the main thing in Test cricket and that will be tested on each and every player. It’s not only about us but every player who plays the game will be tested. It doesn’t matter either you play 200 games or 300 games, I think once you come to the field everything looks challenging and you have to start from zero. So everyone’s patience will be tested. We are ready for that. We had the best preparation for Test cricket and Inshallah we can only give our 100 percent and do our best,” – Rashid said.
”As I have said before, we are new to the format. Once we get the momentum and once we get the proper conditions (that suit us), we can beat any side. As we have seen here in Bangladesh, they beat Australia here. So once you get the conditions you want, you can beat any side. But for experience, you need more games in this format. Once you have more games, I think you will become a proper Test player. Right now we have played enough T20s and ODIs and we have the experience of that as the knowledge,” – He added.
”We know what to do in these formats in any conditions, any formats. But in a Test match, it’s not something habitual to you and it takes time. It takes matches and takes years. The quicker we learn, the better it will be for us,” he said adding that they are not eyeing anything apart from a win against the host to start the tour on a perfect note.
“Definitely, that’s why we are here. Everyone is aiming to win the game. Our only focus is to do well and win the game for the team,” – he said.
”Definitely, Bangladesh team is in a much better position than us as they have played more than 150 Test matches. One thing is, you can keep learning from each and every game. So this format is new for us. But definitely we have the talent and have the skill and we just need to make sure we play positive cricket. We play according to our strength and just believe in ourselves. This game is all about more patience.” – he added.
The youngest Test Skipper Rashid further said that he is very much excited to lead the team and conveyed his team not to take any extra pressure.
“It’s quite good to be leading the team at such a young age I think. It’s a big opportunity for me to learn something from a very young age. It’s always a great pleasure to be in the team. Forget about being the captain, merely representing your team in Test matches is a matter of huge pride for me. But for me leading the team is something very special and exciting for me of being captain of the team. Inshallah, I will try my best to do well and will give my hundred percent here,” – Rashid said.
“I have senior players like Nabi and Asghar, and they always help me and I am learning from them. It’s a learning time for me and it won’t be something like I put extra pressure on me as I am a captain and I have to do this or that,” he added.
Rashid admitted that he needs to be completely on to the front-line bowler apart from leading the side. Being new to the red-ball cricket the leg-spinner sounds confident enough of handling the dual roles.
“I have already put these things out of my mind. When I am bowling, full focus is on my bowling rather than to be just a captain. I try to keep enjoying and not trying to add extra pressure on me. If the captain is under pressure, the team will be under the same. I will try to be as relaxed and as calm as possible, and will try to enjoy the game,” – Rashid concluded.