Wed, 01 Feb 2023

Chattogram [Bangladesh], December 8 (ANI): Zakir Hasan, a left-handed batter, has received his first call-up while Mushfiqur Rahim, Yasir Ali, and Taskin Ahmed have all returned to Bangladesh's squad for the first Test against India, which begins in Chattogram on December 14.

Yasir and Taskin were injured while Mushfiqur had skipped Bangladesh's previous Test series in the West Indies to attend the Haj.

The 24-year-old Zakir was selected for the 17-person team after scoring 173 runs for Bangladesh A in the opening four-day match against India A in Cox's Bazar last week. Despite being nine runs down and on the verge of losing by an innings, his knock helped Bangladesh A tie the game. Zakir, a wicket-keeper who bats in the top order, amassed the most runs this season in Bangladesh's first-class National Cricket League (442 at 56.25).

"Zakir has been on our radar for the last five years. He was in the High-Performance unit for four of those years, and this season he was the highest scorer in first-class cricket. He played a good knock against India-A last week. It saved the game. Selector Abdur Razzak, with Bangladesh A side, witnessed the game and it seems Zakir is prepared for the highest level," said Bangladesh's chief selector Minhajul Abedin as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

The prominent players absent from the Test squad, which will be led by Shakib Al Hasan, includes Tamim Iqbal, who missed the ODI series due to a groin injury, Mosaddek Hossain, and Mustafizur Rahman.

Yasir returns to the Test format after a lengthy hiatus due to the injury he sustained during the tour of South Africa in March and April, while Mushfiqur's comeback is a significant boost for Bangladesh. Along with three spinners Shakib, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, and Taijul Islam, the hosts have chosen to field a side that includes five fast bowlers.

Bangladesh will try to pull off an upset after upsetting the visitors in the ODI series, even though the series is essential for India in terms of their chances of qualifying for the World Test Championship. Out of 11 games, Bangladesh has never defeated India in a Test match, losing nine and drawing two.

The first test begins on December 14 in Chattogram while the second test will take place in Dhaka from December 22.

Test squad: Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mominul Haque, Yasir Ali, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan (capt), Litton Das, Nurul Hasan, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Taskin Ahmed, Khaled Ahmed, Ebadot Hossain, Shoriful Islam, Zakir Hasan, Rejaur Rahman Raja and Anamul Haque (ANI)

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