POST TIME: 19 February, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Tigers hand caps to Jayed, Mahedi
A capacity Sylhet stadium welcomes both teams
Md Abu Talha Sarker, Sylhet

Tigers hand caps to Jayed, Mahedi

Bangladesh hand caps to pacer Abu Jayed Rahi (R) and all-rounder Mahedi Hassan during the second T20 International match at Sylhet International Cricket Stadium yesterday. BCB Photo

Bangladesh handed T20 caps to fast bowler Abu Jayed Chowdhury Rahi and spinner Mahedi Hassan as 62nd and 63rd T20 players at the time of the second and last T20 fixture of the two-match T20 International series against Sri Lanka at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Bangladesh stand-in captain Mahmudullah Riyad handed cap to Mahedi, while paceman Rubel Hossain to Rahi in the clapped-filled presence of the Bangladesh squad and its coaching staffs.

Sylhet-born Rahi drew the attention of all the fronts with his BPL performance as he played 12-match road string for Khulna Titans and grabbed 18 wickets. His international debut was for the time being.

Mahedi on the other hand played last BPL for the Comilla Victorians. His performance for the Victorians was also better. He later played Asian Emerging Cup for Bangladesh. Even he toured England with Bangladesh High Performance (HP) team, wherein he showed his grits.

Abu Jayed, who played 59 first-class matches coupled with 36 List-A and 30 T20 encounters prior to the outset of his international career, picked up one wicket conceding 45 runs in his four overs with the economy of 11.25.

Mahedi, who played so far 25 first-class matches along with 32 List-A and 12 T20 outings before his international debut,  remained wicketless having bowled two overs and gave away 25 runs with the economy of 12.50.

Earlier, Nazmul Islam Apu, Zakir Hasan, Ariful Haque and Afif Hossain debuted for Bangladesh in the opener of the T20 series in Dhaka on February 15. In fact BCB included these youngsters in the national team with an aim to form a balanced side with experienced and youngsters for the next ICC World Cup to be held in England.    

This match was very crucial for Bangladesh as they are yet to win any match against the tourists in this bilateral series. Sri Lanka led the series 1-0 by winning the first match following their Test series 1-0 win.

Meanwhile, players from both Bangladesh and Sri Lanka cricket teams were greeted by Sylhet Divisional Sports Association (DSA) as a part of their planning to mark the maiden participation of the Bangladesh national cricket team at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Saiful Alam Chowdhury Nadel, general of the Sylhet DSA and director of Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) handed over the crests to the players of the both teams at their respective hotel (Rose View) in Sylhet.

But Nadel later handed over to Bangladesh stand-in T20 captain Mahmudullah Riyad in the stadium just before the toss for the last T20 fixture of the two-match T20 series as a symbol of memorabilia.

“Even though a string of international games held here, Bangladesh National men’s cricket team will play their first international game in Sylhet venue. So, we had planned to make it memorable,” said Saiful Alam Chowdhury.

“As a part of it, we greeted them all by handing over crests at their hotel though we had plans to do it in the stadium. But it’s not done possible due to the constraint of time,” Nadel told The Independent.

“Thought it’s not possible to present crest to all the players in the stadium, we handed over a crest to our captain Mahmudullah Riyad as a symbol,” he added.

The picturesque stadium, which was built in the Lakkatura Tea Garden area in 2013, extended to increase the capacity ahead of the T20 World Cup for both men’s and women’s cricket teams in 2014. Then, it hosted six first round games of the Men’s T20 World Cup along with a string of games of the Women’s World T20.

With the capacity of over 18,000 seats the greenery and picturesque stadium till yesterday did not host any match of the Bangladesh national team.

Nadel later handed the special toss coin to the match referees. Bangladesh captain tossed the coin and decided to bowl first after winning. After the loss, the coin will be kept reserve in Sylhet DSA office as a memorabilia.