The West Indies, after a closely fought series in India will next face Bangladesh who are coming off a rather sobering Zimbabwe series in two Tests, three One Day Internationals (ODIs) and three Twenty20 International (T20I) matches in their first full tour of of the country since December 2012. The fixtures were confirmed in July 2018, with the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium scheduled to host its first ODI match.
While Bangladesh drew their just concluded two-Test home series against Zimbabwe 1-1, many backed the visitors who stayed competitive throughout while the hosts’ batting failed abjectly in the first Test, and it remains the Tigers’ biggest concern. There is some good news though, as skipper Shakib Al Hasan returns early from injury as does Soumya Sarkar, whose last Test appearance came on the tour of South Africa in 2017. For the Windies, captain Jason Holder is ruled out with a shoulder injury and vice-captain Kraigg Brathwaite has been named captain of the Test side in his place.
West Indies: 10
One Day International (ODIs)
West Indies: 20
First match: 1999 ICC World Cup – 12th match, Group B, West Indies won by 7 wickets at Clontarf Cricket Club Ground, Dublin on 21st May 1999
Last match: 3rd ODI; Bangladesh won by 18 runs at Warner Park, St Kitts on 28th July 2018
Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is)
West Indies: 4
First game: 2007 ICC World Twenty20 – 5th match, Group A, Bangladesh won by 6 wickets at New Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg on 13 September 2007
Last game: 3rd T20I; Bangladesh won by 19 runs at Lauderhill on 5th Aug 2018
1st Test: November 22nd – November 26th, 09.00am @ Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong
2nd Test: November 30th – December 04th, 09.00am @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
1st ODI: December 09th, 01.30pm @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
2nd ODI: December 11th, 01.30pm @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
3rd ODI: December 14th, 01.30pm @ Sylhet International Cricket Stadium, Sylhet
1st T20I: December 17th, 05.30pm @ Sylhet International Cricket Stadium, Sylhet
2nd T20I: December 20th, 05.30pm @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
3rd T20I: December 22nd, 05.30pm @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
The Bangladesh batsmen eventually managed to snap the streak of eight consecutive sub-200 scores in the second Test against Zimbabwe in Mirpur, where Mushfiqur Rahim struck a magnificent double hundred and Mominul Haque registered his sixth Test ton. Stand-in skipper Mahmudullah Riyad joined in with his second Test ton in the second innings. Riding on these contributions, Bangladesh managed to avoid humiliation and won the second Test comprehensively by 218 runs to level the series after the 151-run loss in Sylhet. The upcoming series against the West Indies will be even tougher for the hosts and according to head coach Steve Rhodes, the hard-fought series against Zimbabwe would do the team a lot of good against the Caribbean side.
Skipper Shakib Al Hasan’s return from injury early will be a shot in the arm as it was feared he would be sidelined for at least three months after undergoing surgery on an injured finger in late September. He missed the recent home series against Zimbabwe but Bangladesh chief selector Minhjaul Abedin said the all-rounder recovered from the injury sooner than expected. Left-arm spinner Nazmul Islam, who played against Zimbabwe, made way for Shakib.
Batsman Liton Das, who scored a grand total of 47 runs in four innings against Zimbabwe, has been axed, as has Abu Jayed, who was replaced after the first Test against Zimbabwe in Sylhet. Nazmul Hossain and pacer Saiful Islam who were also part of the squad for Zimbabwe, have been excluded while top-order batsman Soumya Sarkar was recalled. The hosts have also included uncapped off-spinner Nayeem Hasan and opener Shadman Islam in the squad. Nayeem was in the squad for the home series against Sri Lanka earlier this year but did not play.
Shadman Islam is in the side as back up for the opening slot in the absence of Tamim Iqbal, who is out with a side strain. His knock of 73 against the Windies in the two-day practice match also played a big part in his inclusion. Islam, the 23-year-old left-hander, has been a regular run-scorer in domestic cricket over the last few years and had previously represented Bangladesh A and Bangladesh Under 19 teams. He was the highest scorer in the just concluded National Cricket League, the country’s first-class tournament and known for his gritty batting approach.
On the other side, the injury to Jason Holder will come as a big blow for a Windies side hoping to establish itself once again in the longest format. They were recently blanked 2-0 in India, but Holder’s return from an ankle strain for the second Test showed how important he is to the team’s cause with both bat and ball. Holder is replaced by all-rounder Ramon Reifer, but that is the only change the West Indies have made to their squad that toured India.
The last match West Indies played in Bangladesh was during the 2014 World T20. Their last bilateral tour of the country was in 2012-13. West Indies had blanked Bangladesh 2-0 in the Test series then, but the home side fought back to take the ODI series 3-2, while West Indies ended the tour with victory in the solitary T20I. The two sides met each other in the West Indies earlier this year, where the home side brushed Bangladesh aside 2-0 in the two Tests but the visitors came back to win the three ODIs and three T20Is by identical score lines of 1-2.
Test Squad: Shakib Al Hasan(c), Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Mohammad Mithun, Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim, Ariful Haque, Mahmudullah, Mehidy Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman, Taijul Islam, Khaled Ahmed, Naeem Hasan
Test Squad: Roston Chase, Sunil Ambris, Devendra Bishoo, Kraigg Brathwaite(c), Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Jahmar Hamilton, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope, Shermon Lewis, Keemo Paul, Kieran Powell, Raymon Reifer, Kemar Roach, Jomel Warrican
West Indies’ visit means Bangladesh will have a packed home season, with Zimbabwe’s tour in October and the Bangladesh Premier League scheduled in January. The November-December window had been left empty due to the general elections scheduled in the country at that time, but, as things stand now, the West Indies series will happen alongside the elections.
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