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Preview:

Bangladesh have never waited this long to play an international fixture ever since they attained Test status more than 20 years ago. On Wednesday (January 20), they will step out on the park for the first time since March 11, 2020. It’s been a frustrating long wait for a cricket crazy nation. During this period, the Bangladesh Cricket Board kept their players engaged with a couple of domestic tournaments but nothing comes closer to the real deal.

To make up for lost time, Bangladesh have already declared that they are looking at building a team for the 2023 World Cup. And that is precisely why they have ignored their former captain Mashrafe Mortaza in spite of him signalling his intentions to carry on playing.

They have also added three uncapped players to their 18-man squad hoping to integrate them into the set-up. Rubel Hossain makes a comeback and Tamim Iqbal will be leading his side in a full-fledged series for the first time ever since being named captain. The focus though will not be on any of these men at least for the time being. It’s a comeback of sorts for Bangladesh’s most celebrated cricketer as well.

The cricketing world was stunned when Shakib Al Hasan received a ban for not reporting a corrupt approach. As a result, the allrounder hasn’t featured for the national side since September 2019. He has looked rusty in the domestic tournaments at home but will be determined to make an immediate impact and get going.

Unlike Bangladesh, West Indies have been quite busy since cricket restarted. In fact, they were involved in the first series when they travelled to England.

Most recently, they were in New Zealand as well and have come to Bangladesh with some cricket under their belt. However, some of their top players made themselves unavailable for this series which forced Jason Mohammed to straightaway take captaincy on his comeback. On paper, a rejuvenated full-strength Bangladesh look outright favourites against this depleted West Indies outfit.

Team News:

  1. Shakib Al Hasan will make his return to international cricket after serving a ban. The all-rounder has scored 7641 runs at an average of 37.86 and has also picked up 260 wickets.
  2. Tamim Iqbal is the newly-appointed captain of Bangladesh. The left-hander has scored 933 runs against West Indies in 26 matches at an average of 40.56.
  3. Mushfiqur Rahim has amassed 437 runs against the West Indies, at home maintaining an impressive average of 54.62.
  4. Sunil Ambris has played 13 ODIs and has mustered 447 runs in those games, at an average of 44.70 and a strike rate of 97.17.
  5. Alzarri Joseph is the most experienced player in the West Indies squad for the Bangladesh series. He has picked up 48 wickets in 28 games while maintaining an economy of 5.90 runs per over.

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Match Information

Match: Bangladesh vs West Indies
Series: West Indies tour of Bangladesh, 2021
Date: Wednesday, January 20, 2021
Time: 11:30 local / 05:30 GMT / 10:30 PST
Venue: Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka

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Bangladesh vs West Indies

Weather and Pitch Conditions:

It will be partly cloudy in Dhaka and the chances of rain are 17 percent. The humidity will be high and the temperature will be around 24 degrees Celsius. It is a balanced track at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium. It assists spinners more than fast bowlers, but if batsmen apply themselves, they can score big runs.

Today’s Playing XI:

Bangladesh:

Tamim Iqbal (c), Liton Das, Mahmudullah, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Soumya Sarkar, Mehidy Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Shoriful Islam

West Indies:

Jason Mohammed (c), Sunil Ambris, Joshua Da Silva, Kjorn Ottley, Rovman Powell, Kyle Mayers, Raymon Reifer, Alzarri Joseph, Akeal Hosein, Chemar Holder, Nkrumah Bonner

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