Injuries could peg Bangladesh back as they aim to win the series against the touring Sri Lanka side when the second and final Test commences at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium here on May 23, with vital World Test Championship (WTC) points at stake.
After drawing the opening Test in Chattogram, a depleted Bangladesh are hoping to secure their maiden series win against the island nation in the longest format. But it’s easier said than done though, with injuries plaguing the hosts’ camp.
Bangladesh are missing their four key bowlers. Off-spinner Nayeem Hasan, who picked up six wickets in the first Test, was ruled out with a finger fracture that puts him out of action for four weeks. Joining him is left-arm quick Shoriful Islam, who picked up a right hand injury on the fourth day in Chattogram. Replacements for both players have not yet been announced, according to ICC.Also missing from action are right-arm pacer Taskin Ahmed and off-spinner Mehidy Hasan, who are in various stages of recovery.
On the other hand, the tourists are a confident bunch. However, Bangladesh can take heart in the fact while their bowling has suffered, their batting appears to be chugging along nicely.
During the first Test at Chattogram, Sri Lanka put up a solid 397 in the first innings on the back of a superb 199 from Angelo Mathews and half-centuries from Kusal Mendis and Dinesh Chandimal. However, Bangladesh put up an equally spirited fight-back, scoring 465 that included centuries from Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim, helping them to a 68-run first-innings lead. Sri Lanka then added 260/6 in the second innings before a draw was agreed upon.
“Batsmen or bowlers, we get good results when we can play as a team. The team gets into a good position whenever we give a collective effort. It will help us in Dhaka,” said Bangaldesh skipper Mominul Haque.
“Our pacers did better than theirs (in the first Test). We have a few positives in that aspect. If we are batting first we will try to get 275-300, and then get them out for less than 150 in one innings. It will give us a chance to win,” said Sri Lanka batter Dhananjaya de Silva ahead of the second Test.