After a closely fought T20I series, the focus now shifts to the two-match Test series between India and Bangladesh staring November 14 in Indore. If the T20I series was the only chance for Bangladesh on their tour to India, the Test series against the World number one ranked side in their home conditions will surely be a daunting task for the visitors.
With the first Test in Indore, Bangladesh also kick start their campaign in the World Test Championship. The Bangla Tigers lack in personnel as they rue missing their star all-rounder in Shakib Al Hasan, especially in the longest form of the game. In his absence, Bangladesh will be led by an inexperienced skipper in Mominul Haque.
Not being their most favored format in terms of results, the World number nine ranked Test side have always punched below their weight in the Test cricket. Their most recent loss against Afghanistan in September also alludes to their unfortunate history.
While touring India is one of the toughest challenges in Tests, the eastern neighbors will have nothing to lose. They might have a point to prove as they aim to discover their first ever Test win against the Asian giants.
This Indian side, however, has been unbeatable in past four-five years in their familiar conditions. In their last Test series against South Africa, they crushed Proteas to claim an emphatic 3-0 series victory. This also marked India’s 11th consecutive Test series win at home. And by the looks of it, Bangladesh are too far behind to halt India’s winning campaign on their home soil.
The Men in Blue will see this two-match series as an opportunity to even extend their lead in the World Test Championship and consolidate their position at the top of the table with another 120 points on offer.
India have quite a settled combination going into the first Test. Skipper Kohli and the team management might still consider playing five bowlers instead of their usual policy of going in with six batsmen. Looking at a weakened Bangladesh side, India might fancy featuring three seamers to partner their two spinners in the playing XI.
Bangladesh, on the other hand, will be a worried think-tank considering their poor run in the longest format. They will have a lot of questions to answer leading into the first Test. While batting line-up is almost certain in the absence of Shakib, it is their bowling attack which will be under pressure against a rock-solid Indian line up.
India’s Predicted XI:
Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane (VC), Ravindra Jadeja, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, and Mohammad Shami
Bangladesh Predicted XI:
Shadnam Islam, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque (C), Liton Das, Mushfiqur Rahim (WK), Mahmudullah, Mehidy Hasan, Mosaddek Hossain, Taijul Islam, Mustafizur Rahman, Al Amin Hossain
Author – CricNerds
Cover picture credits – Yahoo Cricket