Shanto to captain Bangladesh in two-test series against New Zealand

DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) — Najmul Hossain Shanto will lead Bangladesh in its two-match test series against New Zealand as the BCB named a team without several key players on Saturday.

Shanto was chosen as the skipper after regular captain Shakib Al Hasan was ruled out of the series with fractured finger, sustained during the World Cup. Liton Das, who led Bangladesh in one-off test against Afghanistan in June, was granted paternity leave for a month.

Opener Tamim Iqbal chose to skip the series. Fast bowler Ebadot Hossain has been in rehab following knee surgery and fellow paceman Taskin Ahmed was rested after suffering a muscle tear during the World Cup.

“We had requested Liton to lead the side at least in the second test but he insisted on being away for the whole series,” BCB cricket operations chief Jalal Yunus said. “So Najmul Hossain Shanto will lead the side in these two tests.”

Shanto has played 23 tests and hit four centuries. He has previously led Bangladesh in three ODIs, including two matches at the World Cup when Shakib was ruled out of the games against India and Australia due to injury.

The 25-year-old left-hander will become the 13th cricketer to captain Bangladesh in tests.

The selectors called up left arm spinner Hasan Morad into the test fold after an impressive start to his first-class career. He has taken 121 wickets from 25 matches since his debut for Chattogram Division in 2021.

Top order batters Shahadat Hossain and pace bowler Hasan Mahmud are the other uncapped players in the squad.

The first test is in Sylhet on Nov. 28 and the second test begins at Mirpur on Dec. 6. The tests are the first WTC series for Bangladesh in 2023-25 cycle.


Squad: Najmul Hossain Shanto (captain), Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Zakir Hasan, Shadman Islam, Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim, Nurul Hasan, Mehidy Hasan, Taijul Islam, Naeem Hasan, Khaled Ahmed, Shoriful Islam, Hasan Mahmud, Shahadat Hossain, Hasan Morad.