Top-order batsman Najmul Hossain Shanto will lead the Bangladesh team in the upcoming two-match series against New Zealand starting later this month, marking his appointment as Bangladesh’s 13th Test captain.
Jalal Younus, chairman of the cricket operation department of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), confirmed the development to media on Saturday.
“Shanto will lead the team in the two Tests against New Zealand,” Jalal said at a press briefing at the BCB media lounge.
In the ICC World Cup 2023, deemed the worst for Bangladesh by Shakib Al Hasan, Shanto led the team in two matches when the regular captain Shakib was out of the playing XI due to injury concerns.
Shakib, who was ruled out of the World Cup before the last match for Bangladesh, is set to miss the upcoming Test series as he continues to recover from a finger injury.
Opener Litton Das has also been granted leave for a month. He recently became father of a baby girl.
“Litton asked for leave for two months; we have accepted one month,” Jalal confirmed. “He became a father, so he needs leave, and we understand it.”
Meanwhile, Allan Donald resigned from his post as the pace bowling coach of Bangladesh. In his absence, coaches from the high-performance unit may join the national team to fulfil his role. The BCB will soon appoint a new pace-bowling coach.
BCB has unveiled a 15-member squad for the upcoming two-match Test series against New Zealand.
This series is part of the ICC Test Championship 2023–25, marking the commencement of the new cycle in Bangladesh.
Left-arm spinner Hasan Morad has earned his first call-up to the Test squad. The 22-year-old has made an impressive start to his first-class career, securing 121 wickets from 25 matches since his debut for Chattogram Division in 2021.
Fellow Chattogram Division top-order batsman Shahadat Hossain Dipu and pace bowler Hasan Mahmud are the other uncapped players included in the squad.
New Zealand's Test squad will arrive in Bangladesh on Monday, and the first Test will be held in Sylhet from November 28 to December 2.
Dhaka's Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium will host the second Test from December 6–10.
Najmul Hossain Shanto (C), Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Zakir Hasan, Shadman Islam, Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim, Nurul Hasan Sohan, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Naeem Hasan, Khaled Ahmed, Shoriful Islam, Hasan Mahmud, Shahadat Hossain Dipu, Hasan Morad.