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World Cup-bound players must be rested for New Zealand ODIs, insists Shakib

Last updated on 11 Sep 2023 | 06:00 AM
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World Cup-bound players must be rested for New Zealand ODIs, insists Shakib

The Bangladesh captain wants his team to stay clear of injuries ahead of the mega event

Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan feels that the World Cup-bound players should be given a rest for the One-Day International (ODI) series against New Zealand at home, starting September 21 in Dhaka. The series will conclude on September 26, and both sides will leave for India the following day. Ahead of the tournament, they will play a couple of warm-up matches - on September 29 and October 2.

Shakib is concerned with the amount of travel the team had to undergo during the ongoing Asia Cup, with the tournament being split between Pakistan and Sri Lanka. While Bangladesh are yet to announce the squad for the World Cup formally, the three ODIs against New Zealand could be an opportunity for them to test their bench strength.

"We will try a few things in the three ODIs against New Zealand," Shakib said. 

"If we can get one or two players from there who can fit into the team [later], it will be better for the team. Everyone has a chance [to play]. I personally believe that those who played in the Asia Cup could be rested from the New Zealand series, especially those who are confirmed for the World Cup.

"We cannot afford injuries in that big tournament, which involves practice matches and lots of travel. We don't have a lot of bench strength. It is very important for us that players are fit and healthy for the World Cup. I want all four of our fast bowlers to remain fit now that Ebadot [Hossain] is out."

New Zealand, who named their 15-member squad earlier today (September 11), will field a second-string side for the Bangladesh ODIs, with fast bowler Lockie Ferguson set to lead for the first time. Other than Ferguson, the Blackcaps have Trent Boult, Rachin Ravindra, Ish Sodhi and Will Young, who will also be part of the squad that will take on Bangladesh.

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