Tigers' T20 mission starts today | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 15, 2016 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:14 PM, January 15, 2016

WALTON T20 CRICKET SERIES

T20 mission of Bangladesh starts today

Seldom has there been such confusion regarding the playing eleven for Bangladesh in the last one-and-a-half years as there are now and there are many reasons for that.

For one, they don't really play too many matches in the shortest format of the game and secondly they have had a brilliant 2015. However, when they take on Zimbabwe at the Sheikh Abu Nasir Stadium in Khulna today for the opening T20I, they will have dual objectives.

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Apart from the win, they will want to see if any of the uncapped players in the squad fit into their plans. Abu Haider, Shuvagata Hom and Nurul Hasan are the men in question.

Having put up a brilliant show in the Bangladesh Premier League, Haider is likely to get a place in the playing eleven as a third pacer. He will have to battle for that spot against Al-Amin Hossain, who had a good time in the BPL as well.

Shuvagata, on the other hand, will have to fight against Arafat Sunny. Sunny, no doubt, has a good record for the Tigers in this format. However, whether Bangladesh will want two slow left-armers in the team remains a question. If not, Shuvagata could find himself a spot.

With Bangladesh's batting being a concern in this format of the game, the team management tends to go in with eight batsmen including Shakib Al Hasan. And if that's the ploy, then Nurul could get the nod ahead of Imrul Kayes, considering that Bangladesh need some late hitters.

Nurul's inclusion in the team could also provide Mushfiqur Rahim with some relief as he may go on to don the wicket-keeping gloves as well. Both Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusingha and skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza have repeatedly said that they are looking to experiment and hope to find the ideal combination ahead of the Asia Cup. That could mean that the next four matches may witness a host of changes.

While Bangladesh will look to experiment, the Zimbabweans will hope they can bounce back from their unexpected defeats at the hands of Afghanistan. They spent a demoralizing time in the Gulf and they know that even a single win here can help lift their spirits.

Their 16-man squad includes the return of Vusi Sibanda, Sean Williams and Brian Vitori -- all of whom have troubled Bangladesh in the past. Their bowling though is bound to struggle a bit with the absence of Tinashe Panyangara who has been their strike bowler for quite some time now.

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