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Tigers seek redemption in 1st Test against Sri Lanka

TBP Online
21 Mar 2024 16:56:05 | Update: 21 Mar 2024 17:36:31
Tigers seek redemption in 1st Test against Sri Lanka

Bangladesh are keen to continue their upsurge in longer version format when they take on Sri Lanka in the two-match Test series opener at Sylhet International Cricket Stadium on Friday. The match starts at 10 am.

The two sides had already completed the white ball cricket with Sri Lanka winning the T20 series by 2-1 and Bangladesh clinching ODI series at the same margin, reports BSS.

Since, their 2-0 defeat against India in 2022, Bangladesh have not lost any series in 2023, and they are keen to keep the trend alive in their first Test series of 2024.

Last year, Bangladesh played all series at home and they beat Afghanistan and Ireland in solitary Test match series while drew a two-match series against mighty New Zealand.

The winning spree is the testament of their Test improvement, according to Captain Najmul Hossain Shanto for whom the series against Sri Lankan will be the first Test assignment as regular captain.

When Bangladesh won its first Test against New Zealand at home last year, Shanto was the stand-in captain as Shakib Al Hasan opted out the match.

After Shanto was given the captaincy in all three formats as regular basis his target for Test cricket is to win as many matches as they can at home while to fight neck-to-neck on overseas ground.

So it is clear that Bangladesh will play all out cricket to win the Test against Sri Lanka even though they have never won a Test against the Lankans on home soil.

Bangladesh so far played 24 Test matches against the Lankans and won just one-that too came in Colombo in their 100th Test in 2017.

Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal, the two protagonists of that remarkable victory, however, won't be playing this match. While Shakib skipped the series due to his eye problem, Tamim's International future is almost over.

However in contrast, Bangladesh lost a staggering number of 18 matches while five matches ended in a draw. On Bangladesh soil, the two sides met 10 times with Sri Lanka winning seven and drawing the rest of the three matches.

Therefore the task at hands for Bangladesh is to end their losing streak against Lankans at home first. Obviously the task will be very difficult for a young Bangladesh side who also lost their most senior player Mushfiqur Rahim due to a thumb injury.

While Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal were not here and Mahmudullah had already retired from Test cricket, Mushfiqur Rahim was supposed to help Bangladesh with his experience at the crunch moment like he did in the ODI series to contribute in Bangladesh's 2-1 victory.

Towhid Hridoy who showed his credential in white-ball cricket, unsurprisingly, replaced Mushfiqur Rahim in the squad. But Test cricket needs more experience, instead of the energy provided by the young player. It is to see how Hridoy plug the loopholes created by the absence of Mushfiqur Rahim.

Bangladesh also have a new face in the squad in Nahid Rana. The young guy is touted as the fastest pacer of the country at this moment. It is believed he can be the first Bangladesh bowler to clock over 150 KM.

Bangladesh packed its squad with four fast bowlers, which indicated that the Sylhet pitch might be favourable for the pacers. With Sri Lanka bolstering its squad by quality spinners, it is understandable that Bangladesh won't give the visitors to play to their strength.

Moreover in the last two tours, Sri Lanka's spinners caused Bangladesh's damage.

Squad lineup

Bangladesh: Najmul Hossain Shanto (Captain), Zakir Hasan, Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Shadman Islam, Litton Kumer Das, Mominul Haque Showrab, Towhid Hridoy, Shahadat Hossain Dipu, Mehidy Hassan Miraz, Nayeem Hasan, Taijul Islam, Shoriful Islam, Syed Khaled Ahmed, Mushfik Hasan, Nahid Rana

Sri Lanka: Dhananjaya De Silva (Captain), Kusal Mendis (Vice Captain), Dimuth Karunaratne, Nishan Madushka, Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Kamindu Mendis, Lahiru Udara, Prabath Jayasuriya, Ramesh Mendis, Nishan Peiris, Kasun Rajitha, Vishwa Fernando, Lahiru Kumara, Chamika Gunasekara