Shoriful Islam has been called up for the 2nd Test against Windies. Everything indicates that he is going to be in the XI for this game.
The way the pitch behaved in the first game and the assumption that the pitch of the 2nd Test is going to be more seam friendly makes the inclusion of someone like Shoriful a must. Hardly anyone will argue against this decision.
On the other hand, Taskin Ahmed is fit for the ODI and T20 series. So, it is expected that Bangladesh is going to field their full-strength bowling line-up in those games.
However, both of them are coming back from big injuries and a long absence from cricket. Shoriful Islam is out of the team for injury since the ODI series against South Africa.
Taskin on the other hand is out since the 1st Test against South Africa. As a result, Bangladesh had to play 4 Tests without their two main pacers and 5 without their full pace-attack.
The more disappointing fact is that all of these Tests were played on seamer-friendly pitches.
This occurred because of over-using of the two-seamers, a matter which has been discussed plenty of times before.
Now it is feared that Bangladesh will do the same mistake once again.
It is the right decision to play Shoriful in St. Lucia. The best seamers are needed to win Tests, especially in such conditions.
But the problem starts after that. The last time Bangladesh visited Windies, they had a disastrous Test performance. Yet they won both the ODI and T20 series.
This time, Bangladesh are in much better form than the Windies, they have the opportunity to swoop both the series again. Especially there is serious optimism about winning the ODI series.
Previously, there was some evident tendency of Bangladesh team management to hide one fault with success in another. They have shown that they can go to any extent for that. The last T20 series against Australia and New Zealand were the most perfect examples.
So, if Bangladesh lose the Test series against Windies, which they are expected to do, they will try to hide this with the ODI and T20 swoop.
If somehow they fail to win that too, then they are likely to go on full throttle against their favourite opponent Zimbabwe. It means that they will try to field Shoriful and Taskin for all the games.
This is where the concerns lie. The series against Windies and Zimbabwe don’t carry much weight. They are not part of the ODI league. The T20 wins won’t help them in the ranking either.
Bangladesh has three big events after these - Asia Cup T20, World T20 and the series against India. They need the best of Shoriful and Taskin for those.
So it would not be wise to exhaust them and make them drain. They should be kept fresh for the upcoming three big projects mentioned and take the opportunity to increase the depth in seam bowling.