In yet another blow to Bangladesh ahead of their tour of Pakistan, five members of their coaching staff have decided not to travel to Pakistan for the first leg of the series. Bangladesh’s ex-captain and their batting mainstay Mushfiqur Rahim has already announced that he would not travel to Pakistan. The Tigers will be also without their talismanic allrounder Shakib Al Hasan who is currently serving a ban for breaching ICC code of conduct.
Bangladesh Cricket Board’s (BCB) cricket operations chairman Akram Khan confirmed the news. Former South African player Neil McKenzie, who is the batting coach of the team, has opted out of the tour along with fielding coach Ryan Cook. The board has also preferred not to avail services of Daniel Vettori as the spin consultant for the upcoming series.
“Strength and conditioning coach Mario [Villavarayan broke his hand recently while team analyst Chandrasekaran will be working with the team over Skype. McKenzie and fielding coach Cook will also not be going, while we haven’t yet confirmed on our new bowling coach,” ESPNCricinfo quoted Akram as saying.
With five members pulling out, head coach Russell Domingo will only have physio Julian Calefato among the regular staff while Sohel Islam (fielding coach) and Tushar Kanti Howlader (strength and conditioning coach) will act as support staff. Earlier this week, Pakistan Cricket Board managed to convince their Bangladesh counterpart for a series in their backyard.
The Tigers will now play two Tests, three T20Is and one ODI in Pakistan. However, they will not play the entire series at a stretch as the tour has been split into three parts. The tour will start with the three T20Is, scheduled to be held between January 24 to 27. Bangladesh will then leave for home before returning to play the first Test, starting on February 7. It will be followed by another break
After the first Test against Bangladesh, Pakistan’s players will take part in the Pakistan Super League. After the conclusion of the tournament on March 22, the second Test of the series will begin on April 5. Prior to the second Test, the one-off ODI will take place on March 3. Both the Tests are part of the World Test Championship.