Talha Kamal
Bangladesh will lock horns with the Windies in Test series at Chattogram tomorrow within a week of the Zimbabwe series. Zimbabwe series had its ups and downs, Tigers whitewashed Zimbabwe in the ODI series but lost the first Test match in a shambolic manner. However, Tigers bounced back strongly by completing the series 1-1.
Bangladesh’s dismal Test performances cannot continue if they want to establish themselves among strong Test playing nations. West Indies is relatively a much stronger team than Zimbabwe and they will posses more threat for Tigers and series against the Windies would be much more difficult.
Therefore, Tigers need to be at their very best to be triumphant over West Indies. Windies may find Bangladesh’s pitch tough to handle likewise Bangladesh found in West Indies. However, having spent a reasonably longer time in India the team is accustomed to sub continental and environment.
The recent performances of Bangladesh in Tests exposed the batting weakness. In absence of Tamim Iqbal, opening batsmen could not build strong opening alliance. However Bangladesh did bat well in the first innings of second Test match against Zimbabwe as they scored a mammoth total of 522. Bangladesh must improve more in batting to stay competitive in Test. Soumya Sarkar got another chance to prove himself, he batted well in the warm up game against Windies. Teenager Shaman also batted exceptionally well to force his way into the squad.
Hopefully Shakib has recovered well; his inclusion will be a great boost for the team. Mithun is looking good at middle order. Mehidy Hasan Miraz has also started to show his batting potential.
Bangladesh also has to improve fielding. In Dhaka Test, Bangladesh dropped at least 7-8 catches, which was unacceptable. Repeat of that will be disastrous for Tigers. Judging the circumstances, wickets, relative strength of the teams the series is expected to produce mouth watering contests. The team that wretch the control first will be have nose in front.
Meanwhile, International Cricket Council (ICC) have updated their Test player’s rankings where Bangladesh wicket keeper batsman Mushfiqur Rahim has climbed up the ladder. While, ace all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan still remains the number 1 all rounder.
In the batting charts, Bangladesh’s Mushfiqur Rahim has achieved a highest-ever position of 18th to date following his double-century against Zimbabwe. The wicketkeeper-batsman’s 219 not out in the first innings has given him a rise of five places, which has helped him to improve his previous highest ranking of 21st, which he had achieved in July 2017.
In all rounder charts, Shakib Al Hasan continues to lead the all-rounders’ list. The change of note is the rise of Mehidi Hasan, who has moved up eight places to a career-high 15th position.
Yasir Shah of Pakistan and Bangladesh’s spin duo of Taijul Islam and Mehedi Hasan are the biggest movers inside the top-30 in the bowlers’ category.
Yasir has returned inside the top-20 in 19th position after climbing two places following his match figures of eight for 163, while Taijul and Mehedi have achieved career-high positions. Taijul has moved three places to 27th following figures of five for 107 and two for 93, while Mehdi has leaped seven places to 28th following his eight wickets in the match.
From the same match, Zimbabwe’s Brendon Taylor’s two centuries (110 and 106 not out) have lifted him 18 places to 27th position and Mahmudullah has moved from 74th to 57th following scores of 36 and 101 not out.