Bangladesh vs New Zealand, 1st Test: Fantasy XI Prediction, Top Captaincy And Vice-Captaincy Picks

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Bangladesh host New Zealand in the first of the two-match Test series 2023, starting Tuesday, November 28 at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium. The match is scheduled to begin at 9:00 AM IST. The Bangladesh cricket team will be led by Najmul Hossain Shanto in the absence of the regular skipper Shakib Al Hasan. Although Bangladesh will begin as the underdogs against the 2021 World Test champions, an upset can’t be ruled out in the two-match Test series with home advantage.

The two teams will also be playing their first matches in the ICC World Test Championship 2023-2025 cycle.

New Zealand enter the Test series following their semi-final run in the recently concluded ODI World Cup 2023. While they triumphed over Bangladesh en route to the last four, the team led by Tim Southee is set to encounter a different challenge in the longer format of the game.

Pitch report

The pitch at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium will benefit the spinners. The average score by the team batting first in the last 10 matches at the venue is 282.

Batting first should be the preferred option at this stadium.

Weather conditions

The temperature at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium is predicted to be 26 degree Celsius with 49 per cent humidity.

Predicted playing XI

Bangladesh: Shadman Islam, Najmul Hossain Shanto (c), Zakir Hasan (wk), Mominul Haque, Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Shoriful Islam, Nayeem Hasan, Khaled Ahmed, Taijul Islam

New Zealand: Devon Conway, Will Young, Kane Williamson, Daryl Mitchell, Rachin Ravindra, Tom Latham (wk), Henry Nicholls, Tim Southee (c), Ajaz Patel, Mitchell Santner, Neil Wagner

BAN vs NZ Fantasy XI

Wicket-keepers: Tom Latham

Batters: Kane Williamson, Daryl Mitchell, Mushfiqur Rahim, Najmul Hossain Shanto

All-rounders: Rachin Ravindra, Mehidy Hasan Miraz

Bowlers: Shoriful Islam, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Mitchell Santner

Tom Latham is one of the best players of spin bowling in the New Zealand squad. The wicketkeeper-batter showcased his prowess with scores of 113, 71 and 62 during the two-match Test series against Pakistan earlier this year. In his overall Test career, the left-handed batter has amassed 5150 runs in 74 matches at an average of 41.53.

In the batting department, former New Zealand Test skipper Kane Willaimson is renowned for his proficiency on turning tracks. Williamson’s role will be pivotal for the Kiwis as they face the challenge posed by the Bangladesh tweakers in the upcoming Test match. The middle-order batter enters the series on the back of a double century against Sri Lanka at Wellington back in March. Overall, the right-handed batter has accumulated 8124 runs in 94 matches.

Daryl Mitchell enters the series with momentum, having delivered an impressive performance in the ODI World Cup 2023 in India. He scored 552 runs in 10 matches. His experience of playing on the slow-turning tracks of India should augur well for New Zealand in the upcoming series.

Mushfiqur Rahim and captain Najmul Hossain Shanto will play crucial roles for Bangladesh in the Test series against New Zealand. Their experience is expected to prove valuable in countering the challenges posed by the Kiwi bowlers.

Among the all-rounders, Rachin Ravindra will look to extend his ODI World Cup form into the upcoming series. With 578 runs in 10 matches, the left-handed batter was New Zealand’s leading run-getter in the quadrennial showpiece. Rachin Ravindra will also be a valuable asset with the ball on the slow-turning pitches of Bangladesh.

Mehidy Hasan Miraz will be a crucial player for Bangladesh. As a batting all-rounder, with the ability to bowl right-arm off-spin, he is expected to play an important role, particularly against experienced spin players from New Zealand such as Kane Williamson and Daryl Mitchell.

In the bowling department, the onus of claiming the 20 Bangladeshi wickets will rest on the shoulders of pacers Tim Southee, Neil Wagner and spinner Mitchell Santner. While the pacers may face a challenging task on less-responsive pitches, left-arm spinner Santner is expected to be the main weapon for New Zealand.

Shoriful Islam is set to spearhead the Bangladesh bowling attack. With 10 wickets in eight matches, the left-arm pacer was the second-highest wicket-taker for Bangladesh in the ODI World Cup 2023. He will play a crucial role in curbing the stroke-makers like Rachin Ravindra and Will Young.

Captain: Kane Williamson

Kane Williamson is set to be the linchpin of the Kiwi batting line-up. He will be expected to make major contributions with the bat throughout the series. Considering his performance in the Indian sub-continent, he stands out as the best choice for the captaincy spot.

Vice-captain: Mitchell Santner

Mitchell Santner’s left-arm spin will play a crucial role for New Zealand, making him a promising candidate to accumulate a significant number of fantasy points in the upcoming series.

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