General

Najmul the new number 3 in Bangladesh ODI team

Left-handed top-order batsman Najmul Hossain Shanto might be placed at number three in the batting order in the ODIs against the West Indies which will start on January 20.

Russell Domingo, the head coach of the Tigers, said this on Monday.

Najmul already played five ODIs and batted at number three in two matches but failed to impress as he posted 29 and six. But Domingo believes the batsman has all the ability to shine at number three.

Najmul scored only 69 runs in five games in the last 50-over competition in the domestic arena – BCB President’s Cup. But the southpaw was at his best at the Bangabandhu T20 Cup 2020 where he posted 301 in eight matches with two 50s and one 100.

The left-handed top-order batsman’s new placement will mean that Shakib Al Hasan, who has been the most successful number three of Bangladesh in recent times, will be moved to number four.

“Shanto has been in really good form. It is great to have Shakib back. He had an unbelievable World Cup at number three,” Domingo said.

“I am thinking of having the experienced players – Shakib, Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmudullah Riyad – at number four, five and six. This will offer us more depth in the middle-order.”

“The players already know what their roles are. However, we have not announced the final XI to them. They will be informed about their particular position today before the media gets to know about who will bat at what position,” Domingo said.

Shakib was Bangladesh’s number three during the last ICC ODI World Cup in England where the southpaw scored 606 runs with five 50s and two 100s.

He batted at number three in 23 games and scored 1,177 runs at an average of 58.85 with two 100s.

“Najmul is in really good touch now. He played in the last series against Zimbabwe and we need to develop some young batters. In the sub-continent, the top three is the best place to develop young batsmen,” Domingo said.

“Shakib has not played international cricket in a while. So, batting at number four will give him breathing space,” the Tigers’ head coach said.

“However, this batting line-up is not set in stone. We have a long way to go before the World Cup. We need to look at different options before settling on a batting line-up.”

As per the current plan revealed by Bangladesh’s head coach, captain Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das will open the innings for the Tigers.

And Shanto, Shakib, Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah will follow, while Soumya Sarkar will bat at number seven.

The ODI series will begin on January 20 at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium. The venue will host the second ODI on January 22. And the third match will be played in Chattogram on January 25.

Source: United News of Bangladesh