The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has decided to change the venue for the third One-day International (ODI) against India as threats of protest loom over the city. Notably, India will arrive in Bangladesh next week for a three-match ODI series followed by a two-match Test series. All three ODIs were scheduled to be played in Dhaka.
However, as the country’s opposition party plans a protest on 10 December, the day on which the final ODI will be played, the BCB has decided to move the match to Chittagong. Shifting the game to Chittagong means it will avoid a rally by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) which is expected to bring hundreds of thousands on to the streets of Dhaka.
The BNP has staged several huge demonstrations around the country since last month in an effort to force the resignation of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's government. "Chittagong was originally scheduled to host one Test. We felt there should be an ODI at the venue too," Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) operations chief Jalal Yunus told AFP on Wednesday.
Jalal declined to comment on whether the protest had caused the late venue change, but the newspaper New Age said the board had taken the decision to avoid the rally, quoting an unnamed BCB official.
Notably, India will be touring Bangladesh for the first time since 2015. The two teams will play three ODIs scheduled for December 4, 7, and 10. The ODI series will be followed by two Test matches that will be played on 14-18 December and 22-26 December. While the first Test will be played in Chittagong, Dhaka will host the second Test. Both matches will be a part of the World Test Championship cycle.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has also announced the squads for the three ODIs and two Tests.
India's squad for Bangladesh ODIs: Rohit Sharma (C), KL Rahul (VC), Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, Rajat Patidar, Shreyas Iyer, Rahul Tripathi, Rishabh Pant (WK), Ishan Kishan (WK), Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, Deepak Chahar, Yash Dayal
India's squad for Bangladesh Tests: Rohit Sharma (C), KL Rahul (VC), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (WK), KS Bharat (WK), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Shardul Thakur, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, Umesh Yadav