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Shakib takes over as Bangladesh Test captain

Shakib Al Hasan has been named Bangladesh’s new Test captain, with the allrounder taking over from Mushfiqur Rahim.

The Bangladesh Cricket Board on Sunday decided on the change, which was anticipated following the Test debacle during the Tigers’ South Africa tour earlier this year.

Shakib was rested for the Test series, following which Chandika Hathurusingha resigned as head coach of the Tigers.

Shakib, who also captains the Twenty20 team, will have Mahmudullah Riyad as his deputy.

“The teams for the other formats will remain the same,” BCB President Nazmul Hassan said at a media briefing.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur drew criticism after blaming the bowlers for the defeats in South Africa.

Earlier, while bringing changes to the ODI and T20I teams, the BCB chief had said they wanted Mushfiqur to concentrate more on batting.

On Sunday, he said this was not the only reason behind replacing him with Shakib as captain.

“We thought some changes were needed here,” he said.

“And we want the best from Mushfiqur in batting. We think he should focus on batting and that’s why we are taking some pressure off him,” he added.

Mahmudullah, who has replaced Tamim Iqbal as the vice-captain of the Test team, had earlier stepped down from vice-captaincy following a poor run of form.

The BCB boss did not explain why Tamim was removed as vice-captain. “Tamim remains the deputy in T20,” he added.

Shakib became captain in 2009 with Tamim as the deputy, but were replaced after their failures in the 2011 Zimbabwe tour with Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah respectively.

Amid continuous failures in 2014, BCB charged Mashrafe Bin Mortaza with leading the ODI and T20I teams. The pacer is still the captain of the ODI team with Shakib as his deputy.

Shakib got captaincy of the T20 team after Mashrafe retired from the format in April this year.

Asked whether the BCB was restoring the system with a single captain across all formats, Hassan said, “Maybe. It’s difficult to say now. We are weighing both the options.”

“But there is no possibility of it (single captain in all formats) now as Mashrafe remains the ODI captain. There is no question of a change there and we see no change is needed there,” he added.

Under Shakib’s leadership, Bangladesh lost all six T20Is. As Test captain, he had earned Bangladesh one victory in eight matches.

Before the South Africa tour, Shakib asked for a six-month leave from Test. The BCB rested him for the two Tests in South Africa.

Hassan said he spoke with Shakib, Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah before ringing in the changes.

“Mushfiq is in Thailand today, but I’ve spoken to him,” the BCB chief said.

With Mushfiqur at the helm, Bangladesh won seven of 34 Tests, lost 18 and drew nine.

No other Test captain could bring more than one victory for Bangladesh.