Former West Indies all-rounder Phil Simmons has been appointed coach of Afghanistan as the country prepares for its first Test match, it was announced Sunday.

The war-torn nation was awarded Test status in June, along with Ireland.

The appointment was announced on Twitter by the Afghanistan Cricket Board.

The former opening batsman and medium-fast bowler, who retired in 2002, had previous coaching spells with Zimbabwe, Ireland and the West Indies.

Simmons will now join the Afghanistan squad in Dubai as it prepares for a limited-overs series against Zimbabwe in Sharjah in February.

Afghanistan will play their first Test match against India, where they play the majority of their home games, although a date has yet to be announced.

Former India cricketer, Lalchand Rajput, was the previous coach of the outfit. However, he quit from the post over security concerns.

Incidentally, Simmons had applied for the post of India coach after the unceremonious exit of Anil Kumble earlier this year.