Last stand saves Ireland on tough first day against Afghanistan

Tim Murtagh and George Dockrell put on 87 for the 10th wicket in Dehradun

Batting No 11,  Tim Murtagh top-scored for Ireland with an unbeaten 54 against Afghanistan in Dehradun. Photograph:   Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Batting No 11, Tim Murtagh top-scored for Ireland with an unbeaten 54 against Afghanistan in Dehradun. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

 

Test Match (at Dehradun, India) - Day one: Ireland 1st Inns 172 (T Murtagh 54no, G Dockrell 39, P Stirling 26; M Nabi 3-26, Y Ahmadzai 3-41, R Khan 2-20, W Salamkheil 2-35), Afghanistan 1st Inns 90-2 (31 ovs) (M Shahzad 40, R Shah 22no; J Cameron-Dow 2-35).

Ireland endured a very disappointing first away day in Test cricket after they were bowled out for 172 in just 60 overs in two sessions of the one-off Test against Afghanistan at Dehradun in India on Friday.

After a sprightly start by Ireland after winning the toss, Afghanistan’s bowlers ripped through the tourist’s top order as they collapsed dramatically to 85 for nine. An epic 10th-wicket partnership of 87 from No 11 batsman Tim Murtagh (54 not out) and George Dockrell (39) lifted Graham Ford’s side to 172 against all odds.

Afghanistan quick Yamin Ahmadzai (three for 41) and spin trio Rashid Khan (two for 20), Mohammad Nabi (three for 36) and Waqar Salamkheil (two for 35) caused the Irish all sorts of problems on a slow pitch.

Rashid produced a double strike in his first over; the leg-spinner enticing debutant James McCollum to chop back onto his stumps before trapping Stuart Poynter in-front for a duck.

After Afghanistan’s reply got off to a steady start, Ireland spinner James Cameron-Dow made two vital breakthroughs, removing the assertive Mohammad Shahzad with a brilliant caught and bowled after he struck six fours and a six on his way to 40.

Rahmat Shah (22 not out) and Hashmatullah Shahidi (13 not out) brought their side to 90 for two at stumps, 82 behind Ireland’s total with eight wickets still in hand.

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