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1st Test: India to go on the offensive against Bangladesh in opener

After starting their tour of Bangladesh with defeat in a one-day international series, India’s stand-in captain KL Rahul said they will come out swinging in the opening Test match against the hosts beginning in Chattogram on Wednesday.

Rahul is leading the team in the opener of the two-match series with regular captain Rohit Sharma ruled out with a finger injury. India hope to have him back for the second Test in Mirpur from Dec. 22.

India, the world’s second-ranked Test team behind Australia, are eager to make up for their 2-1 ODI series loss, the team’s first series defeat by Bangladesh in seven years in any format.

“We won’t go in with any set mindset … we are going to go there and try to be aggressive and get a result,” Rahul told reporters on Monday.

“The game is played over five days so it’s important to break it down into smaller targets and try and achieve that. One thing is sure that you are going to see a lot of aggressive cricket from our side.”

Rahul expects talisman Virat Kohli to be in high spirits after the former captain smashed a century in their win in the third ODI.

“He has been in good form, he has done really well for us in T20 cricket and recently got a hundred against Bangladesh in the ODIs. So obviously he will take some confidence in the test match as well,” Rahul added.

Uncapped batsman Abhimanyu Easwaran will replace Rohit in the team for the first test, while Navdeep Saini and Saurabh Kumar have been named as replacements for injured pair Mohammad Shami (shoulder) and Ravindra Jadeja (knee).

Bangladesh seamer Taskin Ahmed said the team’s bowling unit will have to raise their game to take wickets on the flat track at Chattogram.

“Fast bowlers ideally want to bowl on green tops,” said the 27-year-old, who may miss the first Test due to his workload. “Conditions are not in our hands. We have got slow and flat tracks in South Africa and New Zealand.”

“We have to make ourselves so skilful that we can bowl well on all types of wickets.

“Great bowlers are also getting five-fors on flat tracks. We have to focus on our self-improvement rather than (look at) conditions.”

Bangladesh have never beaten India in a Test match.

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