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1st Test: England elect to bat first against Bangladesh

WT24 Desk

Coin favoured, the English captain Alastair Cook chose to open the first innings with bat against Bangladesh in the first Test at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong on Thursday,UNB reports.

Cook joined at the top of the order with debutant Ben Duckett to open the innings on his record-breaking 134th Test appearances for England and to move past Alec Stewart.

In the Bangladesh part there have three debutantes, including batsman Sabbir Rahman and rookie pacer Kamrul Islam Rabbi and 18-year-old off-spinner Mehedi Hasan who led the Bangladesh in the last Under-19 World Cup.

Mushfiqur Rahim-led Bangladesh resumed their Test cricket campaign after a gap of more than 14 months while England took the ground on Thursday after playing out 19 Tests in a period of 14 months.

Cook arrived here earlier this week having flown home for the birth of his second child, had no hesitation about to taking first use of a typically flat and dry-looking surface.

Gareth Batty, who made his debut playing on England’s inaugural tour of Bangladesh in 2003-04, was recalled to a spin-dominant attack for the first time since May 2005.

Batty last featured in a Test for his side against Bangladesh at Chester-le-Street in May 2005 and once again got the same team as opponents on his resuming in this format.

This is Bangladesh’s first Test since July 2015, following the cancellation of Australia’s tour last year. For England, it is the start of an eight-week Asian odyssey, with seven Tests coming up before Christmas, two in Bangladesh and five in India from November 9.

Since 2003, Bangladesh played eight Test matches against England without any win. England team: Alastair Cook (captain), Ben Duckett, Joe Root, Gary Ballance, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Adil Rashid, Gareth Batty and Stuart Broad.

Bangladesh squad: Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque, Mahmudullah, Shaib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim (captain & wk), Sabbir Rahman, Mehedi Hasan, Shafiul Islam, Taijul Islam and Kamrul Islam Rabbi.

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