Bangalore, Jul 25: For the first time, a local tournament here, Dell-KSCA Safi Darashah Trophy, will see the participation of Bangladesh 'A' team which will boast of few international cricketers in the squad, the organisers of the tournament, Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) announced on Tuesday evening.
The tournament, which will have four-day matches, will see eight teams vying for top honours. It will be played in Bangalore and Mysore and the teams are divided into Zones A and B. The tournament gets under way on July 27 and ends on August 14.
Bangladesh A team is captained by Shahriar Nafees and has Shahadat Hossain, Imrul Kayes, Dollar Mahmud among others. Nafees has played 21 Tests and 75 One Day Internationals for Bangladesh. The other three too have international experience. The Bangladesh players have already arrived in Bangalore on Monday and started training at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium on Tuesday. Their first game is on July 27 against Baroda Cricket Association (BCA) XI.
"This is a very unique tournament. It gives youngsters a perfect chance to work on their game. And with the Ranji Trophy coming up, it is vital," former India captain Rahul Dravid said at a press conference.
Last year, final was a 50-over affair but this time it will be a four-day game.
"We wanted to give all the players a chance to work on their game and the four-day format gives you exactly that. So we have decided to make the final a four-day affair as well. A lot of teams wanted to play in the tournament but we realised that we needed to change the format for that so we kept it down to eight teams," former India paceman Javagal Srinath, who is secretary of KSCA, said.
This tournament will feature three teams from the host association, KSCA. There are also teams from Mumbai, Baroda and Hyderabad.
India Test batsman VVS Laxman is likely to feature in Hyderabad team. Another India cricketer Robin Uthappa is part of KSCA President's XI. Paceman Abhimanyu Mithun, who has played for India, is in KSCA XI.
Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) team will be captained by Abhishek Nayar, who has represented India in One Day Internationals.
Zone A matches will be played in Bangalore while Mysore will be the city where teams from Zone B will play.
Bangladesh A squad: Shahriar Nafees (captain), Rokibul Hasan (vice-captain), Muminul Hoque, Md Mithun, Samsur Rahman, Imrul Kayes, Shuvagata Hom, Farhad Hossain, Naeem Islam, Enamul Haque Jr, Shohag Gazi, Shahadat Hossain, Alauddin Babu, Dollar Mahmud, Robiul Islam
Groups and Teams: Zone A: KSCA XI, KSCA Colts, Baroda Cricket Association, Bangladesh ‘A'.
Zone B: KSCA President's XI, Mumbai Cricket Association, Rajasthan Cricket Association, Hyderabad Cricket Association.