Rahmat Shah missed out on becoming Afghanistan’s first Test centurion by two runs but his innings deepened Ireland’s predicament on the second day in Dehradun.
Afghanistan’s number three chopped Tim Murtagh on to his stumps on 98, ending a knock that contained 15 fours and included a 130-run stand with Hashmatullah Shahidi which put their side in the ascendancy.
Shahidi (61) and captain Asghar Afghan (67) contributed half-centuries, the latter thumping four sixes, to help Afghanistan to 314 all out and a first-innings lead of 142 in this one-off Test.
Ireland’s second innings got off to an inauspicious start as captain Will Porterfield edged behind for a second-ball duck.
Paul Stirling (8no) and Andy Balbirnie (14no) ensured there were no further losses as Ireland closed on 22 for one - still 120 short of making their opponents bat again.
Stuart Thompson, Ireland’s all-rounder who claimed 3-28 today, said:“It was good early on when I got into a bit of rhythm and had a good long spell. It was hard work out there, as the wicket didn’t offer us very much, but we knew if we kept going with tight lines and good lengths we’d get our rewards eventually.”
“[Today] was all about keeping their runs down - we didn’t score enough in the first innings, to be honest and we were about keeping their run rate down and then going bang, bang with the wickets.”
“There’s still three days to play in this Test, and a lot of time to bat. If we can put on some big partnerships - the two lads tonight looked set - so if they can kick on and we bat for a long time then we can go past them and get a big lead.”