Shakib '100% fine', set to play Bangladesh's World Cup opener vs Afghanistan

Shakib Al Hasan is fully equipped for his Asia Cup batting preparations BCB

Shakib Al Hasan is "100% fine" and "will be available" for Bangladesh's first match of the ODI World Cup proper, against Afghanistan on October 7 in Dharamsala, said Najmul Hossain Shanto, the team's stand-in captain for the warm-up fixture against England on Monday.

The commentators on the official broadcast of Bangladesh's first warm-up game, against Sri Lanka in Guwahati on September 29, had said that Shakib had injured his foot while playing football during a training session prior to that game. He skipped that game, which Bangladesh won by seven wickets with Mehidy Hasan Miraz leading the side, and appears to be resting once again.

Shanto's update should, however, come as a good news for Bangladesh fans, since Shakib is the team's best all-round player and key to the team's hopes of doing well at the World Cup. Especially after some poor results in the build-up to the big tournament and the sequence of events that led to Tamim Iqbal being left out of the World Cup squad.

Bangladesh couldn't progress beyond the Super Four stage at the Asia Cup earlier this month, though they did finish strongly when they beat India in their last game. They fielded some experimental teams in the three-match series against New Zealand at home immediately after, and lost that series 2-0.

Shakib was one of their better performers at the Asia Cup, scoring 80 in 85 balls and chipping in with the wicket of Suryakumar Yadav in that win over India.