The Bangladesh Cricket Board has announced their 2013/14 domestic schedule to include two Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League tournaments.
The first of the two leagues is that carried over from the 2012/13 season and will take place in September after being rescheduled five times since March 2013. Lasting almost three months and with such a packed fixture list there is no margin for error this time around. The 2013/14 Dhaka Premier League will then be held in April 2014.
The schedule demands that Dhaka Premier League clubs participate in two competitions within the same season when financial constraints exist.
The first-class competition, the National Cricket League (NCL), will take place over two months in November and December.
A 26-day Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) follows and The Bangladesh Cricket League (BCL), the second first-class tournament introduced last year with four zonal teams taken from the best performers in the NCL is scheduled for monsoon season in June.
The BCL has been swapped with the BPL so the latter could have a better chance of turning a profit and also provide players with t20 practice ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 in mid-March.
Many pundits wanted the two first-class tournaments to run consecutively, but this was overruled by the cricket operations committee.
Naimur Rahman, former international captain and the BCB’s tournament committee told the newspaperNew Age, “The preference of the BPL over the BCL cannot be justified.”
“I think the BCL should have been given more preference instead of the BPL because, among the three formats, Bangladesh lacks most in Test cricket.”
“When our standard of Test cricket is so low, I am of the opinion that it will be better to promote the BCL because that will allow our cricketers to develop their skill in the longer version,” he continued.
“If we learn to promote the BCL, then the cricketers will naturally increase their focus on the NCL, because only 80 top-class performers of the NCL will participate in this franchise-based competition.”
On the international front, Bangladesh play a series at home against New Zealand in October. A three-month domestic break exists as the national side will take on Sri Lanka in Tests and ODIs in January, play the Asia Cup in late February and the ICC World Twenty20s from mid-March. India will then tour to play three ODIs in June.