Bangladesh news

Two rounds of BCL before Sri Lanka series

Mohammad Isam

January 6, 2014

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Mushfiqur Rahim talks to Shakib Al Hasan during a training session, Dhaka, October 20, 2013
Bangladesh's top players will be taking part in the BCL © AFP
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The Bangladesh players will get two first-class games before their Test series against Sri Lanka begins from January 27. Those games will be the first two rounds of the Bangladesh Cricket League which will begin on January 12.

The tournament, however, will take a long hiatus after the two rounds. It will return after the World Twenty20, which will end on April 6. The Bangladesh Cricket Board's rationale is that since the country's top players will be taking part in the BCL, it will continue the tournament only once everyone is available.

The two rounds of the BCL will be the Bangladesh players' only match preparation ahead of the Sri Lanka Tests. There were questions regarding preparation ahead of the home series against New Zealand last October as the Bangladesh cricketers played only domestic one-day matches in the lead-up.

Akram Khan, former Bangladesh captain and the BCB cricket operations committee chairman, said the BCL is being organised quickly so that the national cricketers can have some longer-version matches under their belt.

"We are going to see the country's top players take part in the tournament. It is important they play first-class matches ahead of the Test series against Sri Lanka," Akram said. "We will hold the matches in two venues nearby in BKSP, and it will be crucial for the players and the management to pick the right squad."

The BCL is the second first-class tournament in Bangladesh's domestic calendar. It began in the 2012-13 season as part of BCB's efforts to encourage players to take the National Cricket League (NCL) more seriously. The NCL is the bigger first-class tournament with eight teams taking part, while the BCL has four, making sure the NCL performers get selected in the BCL teams.

The board is waiting on the NCL till the political strikes and blockades are over, so that the eight-team competition can be held in all parts of the country.

The four-team BCL for now will take place till January 21, both rounds being played at the two BKSP grounds. The country's largest sports institute has a second ground now on the western part of the premises, which held some Dhaka Premier League games earlier this season.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here

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Posted by   on (January 11, 2014, 22:54 GMT)

Good decision by BCB . First class matches are very important for BD to do well in Test matches

Posted by M_Rakibul_Islam on (January 7, 2014, 10:24 GMT)

Wise decision by BCB. But I'm astonished to see that BCB will not use Mirpur or Fatullah for this venue. I guess there's some restriction 4m ICC & ACC, as these stadiums will host Asia cup & WT20. But BCB should've arranges at list 1 FC match in each of these venues. Unlike last year, BCL should b a 6-round tournament instead of 3. It'll enable cricketers to cope with longer format more. Last 4 rounds can b held in April-May with a Final. BCB should also start NCL parallel to SL tour, Asia Cup, WT20 if the political scenario improves a bit. It'll give experienced & young cricketers in the pipeline to improve their adaptability with longer version. Despite 3/4 main venues will b used for international matches in next 3 months, there r still 4 major venues in western part of BD. So arranging NCL during international events won't b a problem at all.

Posted by Warm_Coffee on (January 6, 2014, 22:57 GMT)

BCL is a good and wise move and should prepare the boys well for the Sri Lankans. I expect nothing less but a 0-0 draw for test series. Its all about progression for Bangladesh team now. No more 1 step forward and then 2 step backs. I think Jahurul will be a good move to play for tests and replace Anamul because Anamul is clearly a walking wicket since he has very poor feet movement. Other than that, I'm expecting the rest of the players to be the same as in the New Zealand test series. However, I may drop Razzak and include a third seamer preferably Abul Hasan who is highly talented not just with ball but bat also and needs a lot of nurturing and managing. But I think he is still injured with serious back problems or something I assume.

Posted by Tiger-Claw on (January 6, 2014, 19:59 GMT)

I really dislike how teams can be very unfair e.g. 3 teams might only have 1 good pacer in their team wile 2 teams have 3 or 4 good pacers, but hardly any spin bowlers. We all know that the primary focus of domestic competitions are to find good cricketers and this competition will be to finalise team selection for the SL tour and to prepare these players. But I would propose that each team is balanced and that every team has to have AT LEAST: 2 openers 1 batsman 1 all rounder 1 wicket keeper 1 specialist spin bowler 2 specialist fast bowlers AND 1 star player/ national team regular who could be one of the above.

This would make the teams more balanced/ competitive.

Posted by InsideHedge on (January 6, 2014, 17:34 GMT)

I'm looking forward to the T20 World Cup in Bangladesh. The cricket fever in that country is similar to what we saw in India in the 70s and 80s, Bangla is now the only cricket country in the world where fans flock to the stadium for all formats.

Like India, it may not last as other interests and saturation take their toll. Therefore, I sincerely hope the current political problems are resolved and the tournament can take place with security for all concerned.

Posted by P.BIPULKUMAR on (January 6, 2014, 16:30 GMT)

As the selection of BCL teams will depend on NCL performance ,NCL should have started in October simultaneusly with NCl Onedayers.

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