At long last, Bangladesh will play international cricket again when they take on West Indies in the first ODI in Mirpur, ending a near nine-month wait due to the Covid-19 lockdown.
Bangladesh v West Indies, 1st ODI
Sher-E-Bangla National Stadium, Mirpur, Dhaka
Wednesday, 20 January, 11.30am local time, 5.30am GMT
The excitement is therefore palatable in Bangladesh, ahead of what is expected to be a tough encounter against West Indies in a three-match ODI series, which is also part of the ICC Cricket World Cup Super League.
Tamim Iqbal, who was appointed the team captain in March, will finally get to lead his side on Wednesday, and Bangladesh will have a full-strength side to choose from, with Shakib Al Hasan returning after a ban and the Bangladesh Cricket Board naming an 18-member squad.
The squad comprised three uncapped players in Shoriful Islam, Mahadi Hasan and Hasan Mahmud, and it remains to be seen whether any of them makes the XI under Tamim’s captaincy.
Unlike Bangladesh, West Indies have been active on the field over the last few months. So much so that some players opted out of taking part on this tour, leaving Cricket West Indies to name a young side captained by Jason Mohammed, who last played for them in 2018.
It means plenty of West Indies players are likely to make their ODI debuts on Wednesday, in what is an opportunity for the youngsters to make their mark.
The series will see both sides begin their CWC Super League campaign.
Remember the last time:
The last time Bangladesh and West Indies clashed in an ODI was during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 in Taunton in June 2019, Bangladesh coasted to a seven-wicket victory, after Shakib’s 99-ball 124* helped them chase down a 322-run target in just 41.3 overs.
What they said:
Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh captain): “These are not your usual series that it doesn't matter if you lose. Every game is important to qualify for the World Cup. We would like to ensure that we don't have to play the qualifying tournament, and we remain in top eight.”
Phil Simmons (West Indies coach): "We don't want to get into the playoffs anymore. To catch up in the series is going to be really hard, so we need to start well."
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