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Bangladesh tour Pakistan after almost 12 years


Bangladesh men’s team became the second side to honour and fulfil their Future Tours Programme (FTP) commitments when they agreed to tour Pakistan in three phases.

The decision for split tours was made in Dubai following a meeting between the Chairmen and Chief Executives of Pakistan Cricket Board and Bangladesh Cricket Board, and the Chairman of the International Cricket Council.

Bangladesh had initially expressed their reluctance to visit Pakistan, expressing security concerns. In the first phase in late January, Bangladesh visited Lahore for three T20s. Pakistan were clearly the better side when they won the opening fixture by five wickets and second by nine wickets, while the third was abandoned, due to the weather, without a ball being bowled. The series result meant Pakistan retained their number-one position on the ICC rankings.

Before the Bangladesh team returned home, the Bangladesh Cricket Board President acknowledged that the security arrangements in Pakistan were excellent and that they had no concerns. In the second phase, Bangladesh visited Rawalpindi in the first week of February to play the first of two ICC World Test Championship Tests.

Pakistan dominated all four days of the match to register an innings and 44 runs victory. This was Pakistan’s 10th win in 11 Tests against Bangladesh and fifth by an innings margin. The star of the Rawalpindi Test was teenager Naseem Shah, who became the youngest bowler in the game to claim a Test hat-trick, as Bangladesh, trailing by 212 runs on the first innings, were bowled out for 168.

The other impressive bowling performances came from Shaheen Shah Afridi (4-53 and 1-39) and Yasir Shah (0-83 and 4-58). In batting, Babar Azam and Shan Masood struck impressive centuries, while Haris Sohail (75) and Asad Shafiq (65) hit half-centuries.

Babar’s 193-ball 143 was his fourth century in seven innings and fifth overall, while Shan hit a 160-ball 100. Bangladesh’s third leg of the tour was scheduled in April for a one-off ODI and the second Test. However, due to COVID-19 pandemic, this has been postponed.

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