Full-strength Bangladesh to face Afghanistan in Dehradun

With the team set to tour West Indies later in June, there were speculations that the BCB may rest the senior players for the series against Afghanistan — which is only a week-long affair.

With Bangladesh fielding its star-studded side against Afghanistan, some intense on-field battle is in the offing. (File Photo)   -  AP

Bangladesh is set to field its full-strength side for the three-match T20 series against Afghanistan in Dehradun in June. With the team set to tour West Indies later in June, there were speculations that the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) may rest the senior players for the series against Afghanistan — which is only a week-long affair.

However, on Thursday, BCB’s cricket operations chairman, Akram Khan, confirmed to Sportstar that the team will feature the top players for the shortest format.

“We will send our full-strength team. For us, every tournament is important. We have been doing well in Tests and ODIs, and now we are improving in T20s as well. So, we will field our main team against Afghanistan, which is also a good opponent,” Khan said, from Dhaka.

The BCB has recently appointed former South Africa batsman, Gary Kirsten, as its consultant. Kirsten, who is presently with Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Indian Premier League (IPL), is expected to visit Dhaka soon after the IPL gets over and Khan is looking forward to working with him.

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“Kirsten is coming as a consultant after the IPL. We are lucky to have someone like him on board. He will help us in taking our cricket forward. We will get a clearer idea on the roadmap once we talk to him here,” Khan, also a former captain, said.

The BCB will take Kirsten’s ‘suggestions on appointing the head coach, the academy coach and also the high-performance coaches.’ And for the time being, Courtney Walsh — the West Indies bowling legend — will continue as the interim coach of the side for its tour to Dehradun. “For the moment, Walsh will travel with the team,” is what Akram said.

The Rajiv Gandhi Stadium in Dehradun will play host to the three-match T20I series for the first time, from June 3 to June 7, and with Bangladesh fielding its star-studded side, some intense on-field battle is in the offing.