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Dhawan welcomes Afghans with rare feat

Powerful left-hander becomes just the sixth batsman to hit a century before lunch in Afghanistan's maiden session of Test cricket

India opener Shikhar Dhawan has given Afghanistan a punishing introduction to Test cricket, smashing a century before lunch in Bengaluru.

Dhawan needed just 87 balls to bring up his seventh Test century, becoming the just the sixth batsman to reach triple-figures before the lunch break on the opening day of a Test.

LIVE: India v Afghanistan, first Test

Electing to bowl first, the Afghans were cruelly denied the scalp of Dhawan when he was on just 23 as they failed to review a caught-behind decision off young paceman Wafadar.

Captain Asghar Stanikzai couldn't come to a decision in time on whether to employ the Decision Review System.

Umpire Chris Gaffaney had deemed it not out but television replays appeared to show a faint outside edge.

The left-hander went on to belt three sixes and 19 fours in his whirlwind hundred, reaching the milestone before the first interval to join David Warner, Majid Khan, Donald Bradman, Charlie Macartney and Victor Trumper in the exclusive century-before-lunch club.

Warner creates history with first-session ton

Dhawan's former IPL teammate David Warner had been the most recent batsman to achieve the feat, crashing a 78-ball hundred against Pakistan in the 2017 New Year's Test in Sydney.

Dhawan was dismissed after the break for 107, with Yamin Ahmadzai collecting Afghanistan's first-ever Test wicket.

On the eve of the historic match, Stanikzai said his team faced sky-high expectations at home.

The mood in war-scarred Afghanistan may also help the team when they step out at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru to enjoy their newfound Test status, he told reporters on the eve of the game.

"It is itself history that we are playing the inaugural and historic Test match against the number one team in the world," the 30-year-old skipper said.

"The mood back home is very positive. They expect us to perform well because recently Afghanistan performed really well in T20 and one day internationals and their expectation will be the same for Tests.

"We have worked hard for this and will try to keep up our good performance in the Test match as well."

With AFP.