Weather against England, says Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim
By Paul Vinnell
Last Updated: 19/10/16 4:28pm
Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim says the stifling heat of Chittagong puts the first Test with England up for grabs.
England go into the series hot favourites - but the hot weather will provide them with a real challenge.
Rahim said: "Weather will obviously have a big effect. Maintaining concentration and consistency over five days will be challenging.
"I think it will be more difficult for them than us, as they are not habituated to this weather."
One factor against the hosts is the fact they have not played a Test match since August last year. In that time, England have played 16 Tests.
Mushfiqur, who skippers the side in Tests only, said: "If we start thinking about these things then we are going on the back foot. Now is the time to play and we are focusing on that.
"The most important thing is being mentally tough. We have practised different things in the last couple of days in that regard and I hope we will be able to translate that on the field."
While their batting line-up of Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque, Mahmudullah, Mushfiqur and Shakib Al Hasan is fairly settled - all six played against South Africa last year - their lower order will be completely different from the one that took to the field against the Proteas.
The hosts have packed their 14-man squad with spinners, with only two seamers, suggesting a pitch that will offer plenty of turn at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium.
Mushfiqur has confirmed he is available to keep wicket after recovering from a finger injury, although it remains to be seen whether he or Nurul Hasan will be behind the stumps on Thursday.