Dhaka: India will look to steamroller a plucky but inconsistent Bangladesh in the second Test starting on Thursday in Dhaka to cement their standing in the ICC Test Championship.
The visitors will, however, again be without injured skipper Rohit Sharma after he missed the first Test with an injured thumb, the Indian cricket board said on Tuesday.
India are currently second in the Test Championship league table behind Australia, who are currently 1-0 up against South Africa in a three-match series at home.
Top two sides for final
The current cycle runs to June 2023, with the nine teams each playing six series. The top two sides will meet in the final at the Oval in London.
India beat Bangladesh in the first Test in Chittagong by 188 runs but the visitors, led by KL Rahul in the absence of Rohit, had to work hard for the victory.
Set a monumental target of 513 runs, Bangladesh put up a strong fight with Zakir Hasan and Najmul Hossain sharing a record opening partnership of 124.
Respect the opposition
Debutant Zakir made 100 and skipper Shakib Al Hasan added 84 but India kept their cool and got the win, with Axar Patel taking four wickets and Kuldeep Yadav — the player of the match — grabbing three.
“That’s Test cricket. You are never going to get a win that is easy. We have played enough cricket to understand that there will be phases when the opposition plays well and you need to respect that,” Rahul said.
Cheteshwar Pujara scored 90 and 102 not out in two innings, while Shubman Gill also recorded his maiden Test hundred in the second innings.
Bangladesh, bottom of the table in the Test championship with just one win from 11 matches, were left ruing their dismal first innings.
“The most disappointing thing is the poor decision-making from the batters,” said coach Russell Domingo.
“There’s a lack of confidence in the top order. They are not managing to find a way to get out of the slump,” he said.
One change in Bangladesh squad
Bangladesh will see at least one change in their line-up after pace bowler Ebadot Hossain was ruled out with a back injury.
The hosts called up uncapped left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed, although a team official said a call would be made later on whether he or fit-again Taskin Ahmed would replace Ebadot.
Bangladesh: Zakir Hasan, Najmul Hossain, Mominul Haque, Yasir Ali, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan (captain), Liton Das, Nurul Hasan, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Taskin Ahmed, Khaled Ahmed, Mahmudul Hasan, Rejaur Rahman Raja.
India: KL Rahul (captain), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, KS Bharat, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Saurabh Kumar, Jaydev Unadkat.