Khulna set to be new Test venueStaff Correspondent
Sheikh Abu Naser Stadium in Khulna could become the seventh Test venue of Bangladesh when the country hosts West Indies in November, said officials of the Bangladesh Cricket Board on Tuesday.
BCB took an initiative to hold a Test match and an one-day international as the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong is all set to go for a renovation work ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 in 2014.
ZACS hosted at least one Test of every series in Bangladesh since 2006, but it is unlikely to be ready until early 2014 after renovation work starts in two months time, said the officials.
It left the BCB with little choice as other major venues will also see some kind of renovation works during the period. However, officials said that the Khulna venue is almost ready and all they need to host a Test match here is the approval of the International Cricket Council.
‘We are trying to arrange a Test match and an ODI at Khulna when we play West Indies in November provided we get the approval from the ICC,’ said Shafiqur Rahman, chairman of grounds and facilities committee of BCB.
‘At that point of time there will be renovation works at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong for the ICC Twenty20 World Cup. We wont get that venue till the mid of 2013,’ he said.
The BCB equipped Khulna stadium with all modern facilities after it was selected as one of the alternative venues during the last ICC World Cup. It also has the most modern drainage system similar to the one at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium, the home of BCB.
The stadium, that hosted Bangladesh’s first official Twenty20 International, is already a recognised ODI venue, though it hosted only two matches, both in 2006 against Kenya and Zimbabwe respectively.
If it gets the nod from ICC it will be Bangladesh’s seventh Test venue after Bangabandhu National Stadium, Chittagong’s MA Aziz Stadium, Fatullah stadium, Shaheed Chandu Stadium in Bogra, Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur and Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong.
Among these venues Fatullah and Bogra have hosted only one Test match each.
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