Bangladesh celebrate a wicket. © Getty Images

Bangladesh have announced an extended 18-member squad that will travel to India to participate in a T20 Quadrangular series involving India A, India B and Thailand. Salma Khatum, the veteran allrounder, has been named skipper of the side for the tournament that is to be held in Patna between January 16 to 22.

The series will be Bangladesh’s final assignment ahead of what is going to be a challenging 2020 ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in Australia next month. They will be looking to use the opportunity to finalise their squad, hand out specific roles to their players, and gain valuable match practice ahead of the big tournament.

The squad has a familiar look to it with the likes of Rumana Ahmed, Jahanara Alam, Nigar Sultana, Fargana Hoque and Nahida Khan likely to form the core.

Big-hitting Ayasha Rahman has been persisted with at the top of the order despite her recent struggles at the international level. Salma and co. will be hoping the right-hander finds some form ahead of the World Cup where her power will be crucial if Bangladesh want to cause a couple of upsets.

Rahman aside, Rumana, Nigar and Fargana will be key cogs in Bangladesh’s batting unit. Nigar’s exceptional run over the last 12 months where she became the first Bangladesh woman to score a T20I century, and also enjoyed success against Pakistan, is good news for Bangladesh. They will want for her to carry that good form through the quadrangular and to the mega event in Australia.

As always, Bangladesh have stuck with a spin-heavy unit, with their bowling expected to revolve around the likes of Rumana, Salma, Nahida, Khadija Tul Kubra, and Fahima Khatun. Jahanara Alam, Panna Ghosh and Ritu Moni are the frontline pacers in the group.

Yet to announce their final World Cup squad, the players will be keen to show some form in this series to seal a berth to Australia.

The team is set to depart for Patna on Tuesday (January 14) afternoon. They will play a round of league matches against India A, India B and Thailand on alternate days from January 16 to January 20, before the final on January 22.

Squad: Salma Khatun (c), Ayasha Rahman, Murshida Khatun, Sanjida Islam, Nigar Sultana Joty (wk), Fargana Hoque Pinky, Lata Mondal, Ritu Moni, Shaila Sharmin, Shamima Sultana (wk), Fahima Khatun, Jahanara Alam, Nahida Akter, Khadija Tul Kubra, Panna Ghosh, Suraya Azmim, Rabeya, Sobhana Mostary.

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