'Sabbir's stomach pain not serious'
Sabbir Rahman's participation in the second Test seems a lot more certain as Bangladesh physio Bayjidul Islam told reporters yesterday that Sabbir's stomach pain was not a serious issue and that he is confident that the batsman will be able to play in the second Test in Dhaka.
Speaking to reporters yesterday afternoon, Bayjidul said: "Sabbir had been complaining of stomach pain since the start of the first Test. He went through an endoscopy today [Wednesday] and the issue is a gastric-related one. The doctor gave him a few dietary measures. The good news is that the pain has reduced."
Since Sabbir did the endoscopy yesterday, he did not join the national team's training session in Mirpur. He will, however, join the camp today.
As a result of the uncertainty surrounding Sabbir, young Mosaddek Hossain was brought in to the squad as cover. However, it seems as though the batsman who has an average of 70 in first-class cricket does not have much of a chance to make his debut.
The chances of the other new entrant in the squad, pacer Shubhashis Roy, to make his debut is more likely. Shubhashis came into the squad in place of Shafiul Islam and if Bangladesh play two pacers like in the first Test, he will definitely be playing.
However, it will not be a surprise if the team management decides to play just one pacer in the second Test. It is something that they had done in 2015 against India. The strategy did not work too well back then with India hammering 283 runs for the opening wicket.
If that is the case, then Shubhashis will have to fight for a place in the squad with Kamrul Islam Rabbi. In that event Bangladesh will think about including an extra spinner -- possibly Shuvagata Hom -- in the eleven. He has played seven Tests so far and has scalped eight wickets.
There have also been discussions about the wicket at Mirpur. The wickets at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium have traditionally been different to that of Chittagong with bowlers managing to extract more bounce. However, with the way Bangladesh performed in the last Test, it will not be a surprise if they get to see a turner once again.