Sourav Ganguly confident but not all quiet on Bangla front
Sourav Ganguly, newly elected president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), stays hopeful that Eden Gardens will host India’s first Day-Night Test during the upcoming series against Bangladesh despite the cricket Board in the neighbouring country fighting a few issues of their own.
The second Test of the series versus Bangladesh is scheduled from November 22 at the Eden. The series comprises three T20Is and two Test matches.
The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) is expected to convey their decision to the BCCI on Tuesday, a day before the team’s departure for New Delhi.
“I spoke to the BCB president (Nazmul Hasan). They are agreeable, they wanted to speak to the players. I’m sure it will be a D-N match. They will also officially announce it soon,” Sourav said on Monday.
The former India captain wanted a confirmation by Monday night but the BCB brass only managed to speak to the players after their practice match ended around 10 pm. The BCB decision will now come only on Tuesday.The Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) has plans to invite Olympic medallists Abhinav Bindra, Mary Kom and PV Sindhu for the event.
Sourav also wants the D-N Test to be an “annual affair”.
However, it was learnt that some of the Bangladesh players have cited their lack of preparation with the pink ball during the course of their meeting with the BCB. The BCB’s cricket operations chairman Akram Khan said the final decision lay with the team management.
“Since we haven’t played or even practised with the pink ball of late, we have left the decision to the players and the coach. Their opinion is very important,” Khan said.
The Bangladesh players last played a game with the pink ball some six years ago. So, heading straightaway into a pink-ball Test match and that too, away from home, against the No. 1 side would be a big risk.
However, according to sources, the Bangladesh Board may just gamble with the idea. “It’s a gamble that the BCB might prefer. They might take a chance… You never know how things could turn out for India since they too haven’t played a pink-ball Test before,” the source said.
There is uncertainty over whether Shakib-al Hasan will be travelling to India. Bangladesh’s Test and T20I captain, it was learnt, didn’t practise with the team over the last couple of days. “He had taken permission from the coach, though,” Khan said. Shakib, who landed himself into trouble after breaching the Board’s central contract clause, is “all but unavailable” for the tour.
“As things stand now, Shakib is unlikely to be a part of the squad for the T20Is and Tests versus India. In that case, Mahmudullah will lead both the squads,” said the source. “But you never know, things can change and that can happen even before the first T20I in New Delhi begins.” Shakib had signed as the brand ambassador of the country’s telecom major Grameenphone, which is a direct competitor of team’s sponsor Robi. “It’s an internal matter of the Board and that’s why there is no need to take any legal action against Shakib.
“However, he certainly has to explain why he signed an endorsement deal which is in violation of central contract,” the BCB CEO was quoted as saying by a Bangladeshi daily.
With inputs from PTI