At least eight athletes of the Indian national cricket team are likely to miss the historic Test match against the Afghan national cricket team scheduled for next month, it has been reported.

According to the reports, the top Indian cricketers will likely miss the match as preparations are underway for the Test series against England and the Afghan team will likely face some second-string players in their debut Test match against India.

The other key players to remain absent during the Test match include Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara, Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, R Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah.

“Test specialists are set to travel to UK for early acclimatization. Everyone has hailed it as good planning on part of the CoA. Isn’t it more important for India to prepare for the Test in England than fielding the maximum firepower against Afghanistan?” an Indian cricket official has told the Times of India.

Kohli and Ashwin have signed to play in England after IPL while Pujara and Ishant, who are without IPL contracts, are already playing in the County Championship there, according to the paper.