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3 November, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Tigers eye series sweep in Tests too

First Test against Zimbabwe begins in Sylhet today
Sports Reporter from Sylhet
Tigers eye series sweep in Tests too
Bangladesh cricketer Mushfiqur Rahim (C) takes a catch as his teammate Mehidy Hasan (L) and Mohammad Mithun (R) look on during a training session on the eve of their first Test cricket match against Zimbabwe at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium in Sylhet yesterday. AFP photo

A high-flying Bangladesh eye another sweep of the series against Zimbabwe when they take on the Southern African nation in a two-match Test series. The opening Test begins today at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium which debuts as the eighth Test venue of the country with Bangladesh aiming to make a winning-start to the venue as well. The match starts at 9.30am BST. “We have just won the  one-day series and gained the confidence, which we want to carry in the Test series,” Bangladesh’s stand-in captain Mahmudullah Riyad said.

“Having said that, we know the challenge the Test cricket offers. Every session is important and the momentum could be shifted but we are confident to overcome the adversity.” Bangladesh have beaten teams like England and Australia in the last two years at home but just couldn’t replicate the form in the overseas Test series.

It has of late suffered a humiliating Test series defeat in West Indies, prompting  Mahmudullah to be more proactive in sorting out the mistakes. “We couldn’t do well in West Indies, so there are rooms to improve. We have to make sure that we won’t do the same mistakes in the series against Zimbabwe,” he added.

“Our main target is the series against West Indies, so it’s important to gain the confidence by winning the series against Zimbabwe.”

Bangladesh will be without the service of two stalwarts—regular captain Shakib Al Hasan and opener Tamim Iqbal but Mahmudullah considered it as the opportunity to test its reserve benches. Left-arm spinner Nazmul Isalm Apu however is in line to make his Test debut.

“Shakib is the kind of player who can give the team a well balance while Tamim’s start is always valuable for our team.”

“But still their absence is the opportunity for others to show their mettle. Hopefully the players would understand their role.” Zimbabwe didn’t win a Test match since its victory against Pakistan at Harare in 2013. But it was not in a mood to make it one-way traffic for Bangladesh. “For a start, we are looking to improve on driving the nail,” Zimbabwe captain Hamilton Masakadza said. “We got ourselves into excellent positions in couple of the ODIs but we couldn’t pull through so the talk around the change room has been about pushing through those positions and driving the nail in.” Masakadza was confident to deal with Bangladesh left-arm spinners, who traditionally makes difference in home Test series.  

“I think they have fewer left-arm spinners this time. It is Bangladesh’s strength. We have really been working on it before we left home. We have had a lot of practice against left-arm spin so that’d be enough to tackle the spinners here.”

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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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