Shanto to lead Bangladesh's squad for T20 World Cup

Najmul Hossain Shanto, who was appointed as Bangladesh captain in all formats earlier this year, is poised to lead his team in the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2024.

On the back of a solid 4-1 win over Zimbabwe in the recently-concluded T20I home series, Bangladesh announced their 15-member squad for next month's marquee event.

The squad also features experienced all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, who returned to T20I cricket after a gap of nearly a year. Shakib was named in the squad for Bangladesh's final two T20Is against Zimbabwe and impressed with a four-wicket haul in the fourth game.

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There were no major surprises in Bangladesh’s 15-player squad for the T20 World Cup, with young quick Tanzim Hasan Sakib earning selection after two appearances against Zimbabwe.

Selectors also included left-arm quick Shoriful Islam, after the 22-year-old was rested for the final two matches with Zimbabwe. Afif Hossain Dhrubo and Hasan Mahmud will travel to the tournament as reserves.

Bangladesh are drawn in Group D alongside South Africa, Sri Lanka, Netherlands and Nepal for next month's event, with their first contest coming against Sri Lanka in Dallas on June 7.

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Gazi Ashraf Hossain, chair of National Selection Panel of BCB, said that the team had waited until the Zimbabwe series to take a call on Saifuddin.

“We had kept Saifuddin in the squad that we submitted to the ICC on April 30," Hossain said. "We wanted to observe and analyse his performance in the Zimbabwe series. But when we considered what the team needs at the moment, Tanzim (Hasan Sakib) was ahead of Saifuddin.

"It was a close call between the two. We saw Tanzim against Sri Lanka. His dedication and hunger kept him ahead. He is also a very good fielder. Saifuddin was the only player who was changed from the squad we had submitted to ICC earlier."

Regarding senior pacer Taskin Ahmed, Hossain said that he was picked despite injury concerns.

“The medical team informed us that Taskin will be fit at some point during the T20 World Cup, which is why he is in the squad. We will follow the ICC’s policy if a replacement is needed. They can be done later. However, I don’t think Taskin can play this month’s series against the USA.”

Hossain said that the team hopes to progress to the second round and beyond in the tournament.

“We have hopes that the team will reach the second round. If we achieve that then we will definitely want to progress further.

"The batting form is a concern. We have to work really hard to overcome this and hopefully the batters will play according to their capability.”

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Bangladesh squad: Najmul Hossain Shanto (c), Taskin Ahmed, Litton Das, Soumya Sarkar, Tanzid Hasan Tamim, Shakib Al Hasan, Tawhid Hridoy, Mahmud Ullah Riyad, Jaker Ali Anik, Tanvir Islam, Shak Mahedi Hasan, Rishad Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Shoriful Islam, Tanzim Hasan Sakib. Travelling reserves: Afif Hossain, Hasan Mahmud

All teams are allowed to make changes to their squad until 25 May, after which any alteration will require approval from ICC's Event Technical Committee.

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