2 July, 2007
The heavy innings defeat suffered by Bangladesh in the first Test in Combo has triggered three changes in the side for the upcoming second Test in P Saravanamuttu Stadium in Colombo. Mushfiqur Rahim, Mohammad Sharif, and Mehrab Hossain Jr. are set to replace Khaled Mashud, Abdur Razzak, and Sakib Al Hasan.
Mushfiqur Rahim is set to take over as the keeper, who is also expected to make the batting order stronger. He has played only two Tests so far, and has been unable to display much of his talent in either one. Mohammad Sharif has been drafted in as the third seamer. He has played nine Tests so far. Mehrab Hossain Jr. is set to make his Test debut as a batsman, but will also be expected to bowl on occasions.
Ashraful practices prior to the second Test in Colombo Â© CricInfo
"We had a look at the wicket and there was some grass on it", said coach Shaun Williams. "We have strengthened our batting in the hope that we put up a better display than we did at the Sinhalese Sports Club Ground. We batted all right to a point in the second innings and we hope to take that positive into the second Test" added the coach.
After the collapse of the batting order in the first Test, Shaun has spent some time in motivating the Tigers by mainly focusing on the positives from the second innings batting display. "The players are wholly motivated because I am focusing only on the positive things. Our third day batting was what we exactly need to show our improvement. The way the top order batted throughout the third day was encouraging and I think we can take inspiration from the positives" he said.
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka has opted to stick with the same team. Although Upal Tharanga is practicing with the team, after a fast recovery from the hairline fracture prior to the first Test, Jayawardene is not too keen to include him yet.
Bangladesh: Javed Omar, Nafees Ahmed, Rajin Saleh, Habibul Bashar, Mohammad Ashraful (captain), Mehrab Hossain, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Shahadat Hossain, Mashrafe Mortaza (vice captain), Mohammad Rafique, Mohammad Sharif.
Sri Lanka: Michael Vandort, Malilnda Warnapura, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene (captain), Chamara Silva, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Prasanna Jayawardene (wk), Chaminda Vaas, Lasith Malinga, Dilhara Fernando, Muttiah Muralitharan.