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10 November, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Bangladesh step into 20th year in Test cricket

MD ABU TALHA SARKER, Dhaka
Bangladesh step into 20th year in Test cricket
In this file photoBangladesh debutant Test captain Naimur Rahman Durjoy (L) and his Indian counterpart Sourav Ganguly exchange mementos before the start of the first Test at Bangabandhu National Stadium on November 10, 2000.

On this day in 2000, Bangladesh announced themselves into the international arc at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka against India. And even after nearly two decades of gaining Test status, Bangladesh is still struggling to make an impact in the longest version of the game.

Bangladesh are yet to make themselves a force to reckon with in the longer version, though they started their journey with some achievements. They became only the second team after Zimbabwe to post over 400 in the inaugural Test. And Aminul Islam Bulbul became Bangladesh's first Test centurion and his 145 was the second highest by any player in a country's inaugural Test after Charles Bannerman's unbeaten 165 in 1877.

Naimur Rahman Durjoy, now a member of Jatiya Sangsad, led Bangladesh in the inaugural Test, while Sourav Ganguly, the present BCCI president, captained the Indian side.

But Bangladesh could not carry that momentum for long, though there were some sporadic glimpses of brilliance of some players – Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan have double centuries in Tests. We have played so far 115 Tests, of which we won only 13. There were so many reasons behind this that gradually started being resolved because of the BCB’s recent time-bound and effective steps.

The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) is mulling making a separate squad for Test cricket. They have taken steps to improve the standard of First Class Cricket, where participation of the national team players has been made compulsory on the basis of their availability.

The board is arranging tours for its teams that make players confident and the effects are showing in the team’s performance. Some talented young players have emerged from that environment. They have proved their worth as future talent.

Regarding the matter, this correspondent spoke to former fast bowler-cum-coach Dipu Rai Choudhury, who shared his experience at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

“We had some accomplishments in the inaugural Test against formidable India. Aminul Islam Bulbul struck 145, captain Nairmur Rahman Durjoy claimed six wickets. It’s 2019 from 2000, meaning we have passed 19 years. It’s a long period. We should establish ourselves in Test, which is considered the basic of cricket, the root of cricket, but we are unable to make a place for ourselves, though we have progressed a lot in ODI and T20I cricket,” said Dipu Rai Chowdhury.

“Some factors are at work here. We are yet to play our national team’s players in First Class cricket. For this, they are unable to improve their performance in the longer version of cricket. Even selectors can’t pick players by testing them ahead of the Test matches or series. They have been inducting players in Tests going by names,” Choudhury told The Independent.

Appreciating the BCB’s recent step to separate the Test squad from the other formats, Dipu Rai Choudhury said the BCB had taken some effective steps to develop the longer-version cricket. The benefits will be evident some years later.

“The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has recently made a move to separate the Test team. I think, the process is just the beginning. I think, those who will play in First Class cricket have to be nursed round the year,” he felt.

“You need a lot of focus, concentration and skill to play a Test match. The temperament will come when they play four-day matches. We think, High Performance and A team are travelling to different countries. They are making them ready for the national team. Some young players are doing well. They have become mentally stronger,” he added.

Citing the name of Aminul Islam Biplob, who debuted on home yard against Afghanistan, the fast-bowling coach said, “Let’s see Aminul Islam, who is basically a batsmen. He is now doing leg-spin. He has been inspired by High Performance. After adjusting himself, he has come into the national team. That’s a great thing for us.”

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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