Sports desk, September 4: Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim won the toss and chose to bat against Australia in the second Test in Chittagong.In response to their loss in the first Test in Mirpur, the Australian selectors dropped Usman Khawaja and replaced him with the allrounder Hilton Cartwright, whose ability to bowl sturdy seamers allowed for the recall of Steve O’Keefe, the injury replacement for Josh Hazlewood.
The hosts meanwhile included an extra batsman in Mominul Haque at the expense of seam bower Shafiul Islam, meaning both sides have chosen only one frontline paceman each.
O’Keefe returned while he is still suspended from playing in New South Wales’ next assignment, the domestic limited-overs tournament, after offensive behaviour towards a female Australian cricketer at the end of season awards night in April. Khawaja, meanwhile, was dropped from an Australian team in Asia for the second time in as many tours, though he is favoured to bat No. 3 during the home Ashes series that follows.
A win or draw for Bangladesh would secure the team’s fourth series win since gaining Test status in 2000, and the first over a team other than Zimbabwe or the West Indies. Australia must avoid defeat in order to avoid dropping to sixth on the ICC Test rankings, their lowest spot since the system was introduced in 2003.
Despite a grim forecast for heavy showers, the skies over Chittagong were clear for the first morning of the match.
Bangladesh: 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Soumya Sarkar, 3 Imrul Kayes, 4 Mominul Haque, 5 Shakib Al Hasan, 6 Mushfiqur Rahim (capt & wk), 7 Sabbir Rahman, 8 Nasir Hossain, 9 Mehidy Hasan, 10 Taijul Islam, 11 Mustafizur Rahman.
Australia: 1 David Warner, 2 Matt Renshaw, 3 Steven Smith (capt), 4 Peter Handscomb, 5 Glenn Maxwell, 6 Hilton Cartwright, 7 Matthew Wade (wk), 8 Ashton Agar, 9 Steve O’Keefe, 10 Pat Cummins, 11 Nathan Lyon.