tttfgjooSports Reporter
Bangladesh will face hosts South Africa in the 1st match of their two-match Test series starting at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom on Thursday.
The match will begin at 2pm Bangladesh time where ICC's new rules, including DRS and sending off a player by on-field umpires for misconduct on the ground, will be applied for the first time.
Tigers' dashing opener Tamim Iqbal and top order batsman Soumya Sarkar who suffered minor injury during the three-day tour match last week, are now fully fit to take the ground in the match which is Bangladesh's 11th encounter against South Africa.
Either Soumya or Imrul Kayes will partner with Tamim to open the innings for Bangladesh on South Africa soil after around a nine-year beak as they played there last in November 2008.
Bangladesh toured South Africa twice before for two-Test series each in 2002 and 2008, and suffered innings defeats in all four matches.
Taijul Islam and Mehedi Hasan Miraz will be the frontline spinners in the absence of all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan to produce anticipatory glee as the seam-friendly pitch at Senwes Park has slowed down in recent times and it is expected to assist spinners.
In the tour match which ended in a draw, young hitter Sabbir Rahman (58* & 67) was bright with two half centuries in two innings while skipper Mushfiqur Rahim (63), Mominul Haque (68) and Imrul Kayes (51) also warmed themselves up well hammering a half century each but the bowlers had less chances to test their forms in one innings of the match.
Bangladesh have pace strength in Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain, Shafiul Islam, Taskin Ahmed and Shubhasish Roy on the seam-friendly pitch.
The Tigers will play the 2nd Test (October 6-10) at Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein.
In their previous 10 Test meetings, Bangladesh drew in two games at home against the Proteas in July 2015 and lost on the eight occasions.
After the Test series, Bangladesh will play three ODIs on October 15, 18 and 22 while two T20Is on October 26 and 29 against the hosts.
Apart from state-run BTV, satellite channels Gazi TV and MaasrangaTV will telecast the match live for Bangladesh spectators.
Bangladesh squad: Mushfiqur Rahim (captain), Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque, Sabbir Rahman, Mahmudullah Riyad, Liton Kumar Das, Mehedi Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain, Shafiul Islam, Taskin Ahmed and Shubhasish Roy.
SA squad for first Test: Faf du Plessis (captain), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Theunis de Bruyn, Quinton de Kock (wk), Dean Elgar, Keshav Maharaj , Aiden Markram, Morne Morkel, Duanne Olivier, Wayne Parnell, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada Markram and all-rounder Andile.