Bangladesh vowed to come out with all guns blazing to win the two-match series as they take on Sri Lanka in the second and final game tomorrow (Monday) at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium.
The match starts at 10 AM and will be aired live on GTV and T Sports channel.
The first match between the two sides in Chattogram ended in a draw after Bangladesh raised a hope of winning the game.
The hosts posted 465 and gained a 68-run lead as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 397. The slow paced Test in the benign pitch gained some speed on the fifth day morning when Bangladesh claimed two crucial wickets.
Bangladesh looked in front with left-arm spinner Taijul Islam particularly appearing unplayable for the Lankan batters.
Sri Lanka were 161-6 in their second innings about halfway through the middle session, leading by 93 runs but saved by Dinesh Chandimal, 39 not out, and Niroshan Dickwella, 61 not out.
Bangladesh captain Mominul Haque said they were just one wicket away from the victory.
It was a huge disappointment for Bangladesh considering the match scenario but Mominul urged his side to turn the despair into joy, winning the second Test.
“Mirpur wicket always produces result, so we are looking for a positive result on this ground,” Mominul said here today during the pre-match conference.
“Shakib and Taijul Islam will be keys in this wicket. Hopefully the batters will back them to help us win the game eventually.”
Mosaddek Hossain, who can be handy as offspinner and can bat well too, is all set to replace Nayeem Hasan in the second Test after the latter was ruled out of finger injury. Nayeem claimed six wickets in the first innings of the Test and hence his absence is a blow for the side, which is looking to win the Test.
“Since Nayeem is not here due to his injury, there is big chance that Mosaddek will play. He can bat too,” Mominul hinted of Mosaddek’s inclusion.
Bangladesh also will not get the service of Shoriful Islam who was ruled out of hand injury. After being injured during Bangladesh’s only innings, Shoriful was unable to bowl in the second innings of Sri Lanka. Ebadot Hossain Chowdhury looked highly likely to replace him but it is to see whether Bangladesh come up with two pacers.
The Tigers in fact are used to play with one pacer in Mirpur, where they had got memorable victories against England and Australia in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
Bangladesh caught both of the sides in spin-web to get their memorable victories but such rage turner didn’t work well against the sub-continent side.
Sri Lanka had already won a Test here in 2018 while recently Pakistan beat Bangladesh by an innings margin. West Indies too won a Test here, giving an indication that Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla is no longer Bangladesh’s fortress.
But still spin will be key here, Mominul indicated. He also knows well that Sri Lanka have good spin resources to take the advantage of this wicket.
However as it was seen, in Chattogram, that Bangladeshi spinners outsmarted Sri Lanka by a large margin. So it is the thing which will give Bangladesh a psychological edge.
Bangladesh so far played 23 Test matches against Sri Lanka, the highest number of matches they played against single country. Of the 23 Tests, they won just one and lost 17 while five of the matches ended in a draw.
Sri Lanka won the first 12 matches in a row between September 2001 and March 2013 after which Bangladesh turned the tide. In the last 10 Test matches between the two sides, Bangladesh though lost five, they won one in 2017 and forced Sri Lanka to draw five matches.
Bangladesh: Mominul Haque (Captain), Tamim Iqbal Khan, Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Liton Das, Yasir Ali Chowdhury, Taijul Islam, Ebadot Hossain Chowdhury, Syed Khaled Ahmed, Quazi Nurul Hasan Sohan, Rejaur Rahman Raja, Shohidul Islam, Mosaddek Hossain Saikat.
Sri Lanka: Dimuth Karunaratne (capt), Kamil Mishara, Oshada Fernando, Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal, Kamindu Mendis, Niroshan Dickwella, Chamika Karunaratne, Ramesh Mendis, Suminda Lakshan, Kasun Rajitha, Vishwa Fernando, Asitha Fernando, Dilshan Madushanka, Praveen Jayawickrama, Lasith Embuldeniya.