A confident-looking Bangladesh are eying to make another historical effort when they take on beleaguered Pakistan in the opening Test match at Khulna today. Bangladesh outclassed their heavyweight opponents by earning a clean sweep in the three-match one-day internationals that began through their first win over the rivals in 16 years. They followed it with their first win in the lone Twenty20 International and now look determined to end their eight-Test losing streak against the side at Sheikh Abu Naser Stadium.
Pakistan are hoping to bounce back from what is said if their ‘lowest point in international cricket’ as they are starting a new phase of the tour with the inclusion of some experienced campaigners.
Skipper Misbah-ul-Haq and veteran Younis Khan will try to come forward in order to change their fortune that hardly betrayed them against the Tigers in the past.
‘Bangladesh never in the past took the field against Pakistan for a Test with a good mental state,’ Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim told reporters at Khulna.
‘Now we have the confidence to do well over five days. The senior players and the debutants in waiting are all prepared,’ he said.
‘They are legends of Test cricket, and they will add to this batting line-up. But the 4-0 margin will be in their mind,’ he said.
Bangladesh’s batting will revolve around Mominul Haque, arguably country’s best Test batsman, who is expected to feature in his first game in the ongoing series.
Left-handed Mominul was sidelined in the ODIs before being omitted in lone Twenty20 International but knowing his importance management looked to make him comfortable.
Coach Chandika Hathurusinghe had a long chat with Mominul that only indicated that if Tigers are to make an impact, the little maestro needs to show his temperament.
Among the three uncapped players, paceman Mohammad Shahid and batsman Soumya Sarkar are expected to make their debut while leg-spinner Jubair Hossain may require making the way for Suvagata Hom.
With Sakib al Hasan and Taijul Islam in the squad, team sources confirmed management want to use Shuvagata as third spinner, which they believe will give the batting some much-needed depth as well.
The pitch suggested that there will be turn in the track as the grass that covered it has been removed by the instruction of the team management.
Pakistan have decided against seeking a replacement as leg-spinner Yasir Shah, who missed the ODI series with a hand injury, has recovered and is available for selection for the first Test.
-With New Age input