Steve Rhodes Bangladesh West Indies 2018
Steve Rhodes Getty Images

Newly appointed Bangladesh cricket coach Steve Rhodes predicted a competitive Test series in the West Indies next month but said there was no reason the team could not win. The former England wicketkeeper was formally introduced as the Tigers’ coach on Wednesday after his appointment was confirmed earlier this month following a long hunt for a new coach for the Test minnows.

Rhodes, who has never previously coached a national team, will make his debut during the Test series in the West Indies in July. The first Test will be played in Antigua from July 4 while the second and final Test will be held in Kingston, Jamaica from July 12.

“If we get the teamwork right and team feel right, then it gives better chances to be successful in West Indies,” Rhodes said in his first formal press conference as coach. He said the team would try their best “to win the series”.

“We all know that the task is a difficult one. Only two Test matches. We can come out from those traps and start the Test matches well, and then there is no reason why we can’t win,” he said, referring to the team’s recent poor form.

Bangladesh, who are also scheduled to play three ODIs and as many Twenty20 internationals on the West Indies tour, will leave home on June 23. Mustafizur Rahman will miss the tour through injury, which Rhodes said was a blow for the team’s prospects in the Caribbean.

After Sri Lankan Chandika Hathurusingha left the Bangladesh head coach position, Bangladesh ranked eighth in the ICC Test ranking has seen a dip in form. They recently lost 0-3 in a short format cricket match against Afghanistan.

West Indies, ranked ninth, are currently playing well, up 1-0 in the ongoing Test series against Sri Lanka. They had defeated Bangladesh 2-0 during a 2014 Test series.