Tigers face off Ireland for elusive Test victory
Bangladesh are expected to snap their losing streak in red ball cricket when they take on an inexperienced Ireland side in
the one-off Test at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium tomorrow
The match starts at 10 AM and will be aired live on T-sports Channel.
The Tigers are going through a bad patch in this format, having lost eight
Tests and drawn one after their landmark Test victory in New Zealand in early
2022. Also Bangladesh haven’t won a Test at home since their victory against
Zimbabwe in 2020.
Even though Ireland won the last T20 against the hosts to register their
first victory on Bangladesh soil, the Test game is highly likely to be one-
sided affair. Ireland which got the Test status in 2017, played only three
Tests with the last in 2019. They lost all of the Test matches duly.
In the last Test against England, they though showed a promising sign by
bowling out the oldest cricket nation for just 85 runs in the first innings.
They then put up 207 runs to take a valuable lead but their lack of
experience in longer version format was widely exposed as the game progressed
as they were all out for just 38 runs, chasing a 182-run target to eventually
loss the game by 143 runs.
They also lost inaugural Test against Pakistan by five wickets and second
Test against Afghanistan by seven wickets.
However, Ireland have just four survivors from their last Test in 2019 and
included nine uncapped players in their Test squad for Bangladesh. Three of
them have never played first-class cricket. Opposite them are Bangladesh,
with 473 caps in their Test squad.
While the gulf of difference between the two teams in terms of experience is
clearly open, Ireland also proved them a no match for Bangladesh in white-
ball leg of the series. They lost the ODI series by 2-0, one game was washed
out and were outplayed in T20 series by 2-1.
Bangladesh indeed created and rewrote national records in every game they
played, barring the third T20 match, which they lost, paying the price of
their ultra-aggressive cricket. If Bangladesh played safe cricket, they would
have won that game too but the Tigers didn’t back out from the brand what
they want to expertise.
Paul Striling who led the team from the front in the third T20 flew to
Ireland as he is not the part of the Test squad. But regular captain Andrew
Balbirnie is back to lead the side. Also Ireland will get Peter Moor, who
moved away from Zimbabwe to take the Irish citizenship.
Moor played eight Test matches for Zimbabwe while Ireland as a team played
only three Tests. No doubt Moor, who played his last Test in 2018, that too
in Dhaka, will give Ireland batting line up a boost.
Bangladesh announced a full strength team with Captain Shakib Al Hasan and
his deputy Liton Das being named when there was a speculation that they might
get NOC for IPL. Opener Tamim Iqbal and fast bowler Ebadot Hossain, called as
Sylhet Rocket by fast Bowling Coach Alan Donald are back to the side after
missing the India Test. Zakir Hasan, who sustained a thumb injury, is the big
miss after a successful Test series against India.
When everything appeared to be in Bangladesh’s control, allrounder Mehidy
Hasan Miraz said they just can’t afford to be complacent.
“We nearly won our last Test in this ground against India. It is our lucky
ground. We have won Tests here before. We cannot take Ireland lightly. We
respect them. We will give our best,” Miraz said.
“The confidence within this team, keeps us in a good position. Since we
haven’t won here for a while, it will be a good feeling if we can win.”
Overall Bangladesh’s Test statistics is utterly disappointing. After playing
136 matches, they won just 16 and lost a staggering number of 102 matches.
The rest of the 18 matches ended in a draw, most of which came, thanks to
Bangladesh: Shakib Al Hasan (Captain), Litton Das (Vice Captain), Tamim
Iqbal, Shadman Islam, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim,
Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Taskin Ahmed, Syed Khaled Ahmed, Ebadot
Hossain Chowdhury, Shoriful Islam and Mahmudul Hasan Joy
Ireland: Andy Balbirnie (Captain), Peter Moor (wk), Lorcan Tucker (wk),
George Dockrell, Mark Adair, Andy McBrine, Barry McCarthy, Curtis Campher,
Harry Tector, Murray Commins, Fionn Hand, Graham Hume, Matthew Humphreys and