Windies positive ahead of 1st Test

Chittagong, Bangladesh – The West Indies have made the switch from the white ball to the red ball as they prepare to face Bangladesh in the two-match Test Series. On Wednesday, the Windies were forced to use the indoor facilities at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium but they got outdoors on Thursday for a fun training session in the sunshine.

West Indies celebrate

According to Head Coach Ottis Gibson, the Windies will look to take advantage of fresh legs to build on their one-day success against Bangladesh by winning the Test series starting in Chittagong on Friday. First ball is 9.30 am (11.30 pm Thursday Eastern Caribbean Time/10.30 pm Jamaica Time).

Veteran left-hander Shivnarine Chanderpaul, middle-order batsman, Kirk Edwards, and Fidel Edwards are among six players to join the Test squad after the three-match One-Day Series, which the tourists won 2-1 on Tuesday. The others to join the squad are teenaged opener Kraigg Brathwaite, wicket-keeper Carlton Baugh, off-spinner Shane Shillingford.

Chanderpaul is the most experienced batsman in the squad with 9,367 runs in 133 Tests, while Kirk Edwards caught the eye with a century on his Test debut against India inn Dominica in July. Fidel Edwards is among the fastest bowlers in the game and could be a handful for the Bangladeshis.

“We have some very good new guys coming in who were not involved in One-Dayers and these players can make a big difference,” Gibson said ahead of the two-Test series. “Coming to Bangladesh is always a challenge and we look forward to the Tests.”

The West Indies have had a mixed tour so far. They lost the one-off T20 International but rebounded to win the first and second ODIs handsomely. They were however shot out for 61 in the final One-Dayer in Chittagong on Tuesday. Gibson played down the eight-wicket defeat in the last ODI, saying his team was focussed on winning the Test series.

“That was a game with the one-day team. Our minds have now changed quickly towards the Tests. Obviously, we finished the one-day series a bit low, but it’s also a fact that we won a one-day series away from home for the first time since 2007 when we won in Zimbabwe.”

The West Indies won both Tests on their previous tour of Bangladesh in 2002, but Gibson said his team could not afford to underestimate the hosts in their own backyard.

“Bangladesh are a very tough team to play in their home conditions. Conditions play a huge part in Bangladesh. We are not in a position to take Bangladesh for granted, specially when you are playing away from home,” Gibson said.

Bangladesh coach Stuart Law said his team's morale was high ahead of the Test series.

“The result of the last one-day match will boost our confidence,” the former Australian allrounder said. “The guys put in a very good performance and showed a lot of guts.

“We have got the potential. We need to score more runs at the top of the order. We go into the Test knowing this surface suits us and that gives us confidence.”
Bangladesh dropped batsman Mohammad Ashraful and spinner Abdur Razzak, while pacer Shafiul Islam was ruled out due to a foot injury. They were replaced by Shahadat Hossain, Raqibul Hasan and Elias Sunny.

The second Test will be played in Dhaka from October 29.

West Indies: Darren Sammy (captain), Carlton Baugh, Devendra Bishoo, Kraigg Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Sahivnarine Chanderpaul, Fidel Edwards, Kirk Edwards, Keiran Powell, Denesh Ramdin, Ravi Rampaul, Kemar Roach, Marlon Samuels, Shane Shillingford, Lendl Simmons.
Bangladesh: Mushfiqur Rahim (captain), Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Shakib Al Hasan, Raqibul Hasan, Naeem Islam, Nasir Hossain, Shahriar Nafees, Rubel Hossain, Nazmul Hossain, Shahadat Hossain, Suhrawadi Shuvo, Shuvagata Hom, Elias Sunny

Thu, 10/20/2011 - 05:38