Dhaka: Bangladesh leaves for a month-long cricket tour of Sri Lanka on Tuesday, hoping to improve upon a dismal record of losing 10 of its 11 Test matches so far.
The squad, led by wicket-keeper Khaled Masud under the supervision of its new Pakistani coach Mohsin Kamal, will play two Tests and three One-day matches on its second tour of Sri Lanka in a year. The previous Test in Sri Lanka last September, part of the Asian Test championships, ended in a massive defeat by an innings and 137 runs. The only bright spot in the three-day defeat was a century on debut by teenage prodigy Mohammad Ashraful, who hopes to do as well this time. Kamal, a former Pakistani fast bowler, undertakes his first tour with Bangladesh after replacing Australian Trevor Chappell as coach earlier this year. "I know Sri Lanka will be tough to beat but we do not suffer from an inferiority complex. We have been trying to work on the mistakes of the past and hopefully we will do well this time," Kamal said. "The important thing for us is to fight all the way." The batting again revolves around the experienced trio of Habibul Bashar and former captains Aminul Islam and Akram Khan. But the bowling is depleted with the absence, through injuries, of Mohammad Sharif, Shahriar Hossain and the promising Mashrafee bin Mortuja. Left-armer Monjurul Islam spearheads the attack, which includes newcomers Tarek Aziz Khan, Alamgir Kabir and Talha Zubair. The tour opens on July 12 with two three-day warm-up games followed by the first Test at Colombo from July 21. The second Test will also be played in Colombo from July 28. Three One-day Internationals will be held on August 4, 5 and 7. The squad: Khaled Masud (captain), Habibul Bashar, Aminul Islam, Akram Khan, Al-Sahariar, Abdul Hannan Sarkar, Mohammed Ashraful, Tushar Imran, Fahim Muntasir, Monjarul Islam, Tarek Aziz Khan, Alamgir Kabir, Talha Zubair, Enamul Haque and Ehsanul Haque. Coach: Mohsin Kamal
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