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Domingo adamant Mustafizur not ready for Tests

  • Published at 06:52 pm February 21st, 2020
Mustafizur
Bangladesh's Mustafizur Rahman during training in Mirpur Wednesday Dhaka Tribune/Md Manik

Domingo clarified his stance with Mustafizur Friday, on the eve of the Zimbabwe Test, starting Saturday at Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka

Bangladesh cricket team head coach Russell Domingo is adamant that left-arm pacer Mustafizur Rahman is not ready for Test cricket.

The national selection panel came under heavy criticism after naming Mustafizur for the solitary Zimbabwe Test, right after dropping him for the first Test away to Pakistan in Rawalpindi.

Chief of the national selection panel, Minhajul Abedin back then cited that Mustafizur was not ready for longer version, and has now pushed the decision firmly on Domingo’s shoulders.

Domingo clarified his stance with Mustafizur Friday, on the eve of the Zimbabwe Test, starting Saturday at Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.

Bangladesh's quintet of pacemen - Mustafizur, Ebadat Hossain, Hasan Mahmud, Taskin Ahmed and Abu Jayed - during training Thursday Dhaka Tribune/Md Manik

The former South Africa head coach said bringing “the Fizz” back into the national Test fold is part of the process of integrating him into the plans for the longer version, and that it’s not necessary that he will be playing the game.

“I know there’s been a bit of miscommunication regarding the Mustafizur situation. I don’t think he is ready for Tests until he does some technical work, so that it allows him to swing the ball back into the right-hander. Getting him back into the squad is the start of that process that he can spend some time with our new (pace) bowling coach (Ottis Gibson),” explained Domingo to the media Friday.

“He [Mustafizur] was put back into the squad not to play, but to train and get some shape back. To get a connection with Ottis, develop a bit of trust and relationship. He will stay with the team. Mustafizur is not playing this Test match. He is going to be bowling every day, and I have told him that, to make sure that he gets the shape that’s required as that (will) benefit him in Tests and white-ball cricket,” he added.

Bangladesh are desperate to break the humiliating losing streak in red-ball cricket, and as per the strategy till Friday afternoon, the side are mulling playing two pacers – most likely to be Abu Jayed and Ebadat Hossain.

Mustafizur throws the ball during training Thursday Dhaka Tribune/Md Manik

The initial 16-member squad for the Zimbabwe Test involved five pacemen. 

Young Hasan Mahmud has already been sent to join his Bangladesh Cricket League side – Islami Bank East Zone – for the final round match starting Saturday.

The other pacer left in the squad – Taskin Ahmed – will only be considered if Bangladesh decide to play three pacemen.