• Saturday, Mar 28, 2020
  • Last Update : 11:32 pm

A new culture in the making

  • Published at 11:24 pm February 28th, 2020
Bangladesh's Mustafizur Rahman reacts during training in Sylhet Friday BCB

The scenario is refreshing in that the national think tank has finally been able to come out from their traditional mindset – solely depending on the spinners at home.

Bangladesh Cricket Board’s ambition of developing a cricket culture – having different set of squads for different formats – has started to take shape.

It was clearly evident in the Bangladesh ODI squad for the three-match series against Zimbabwe in Sylhet, which had a completely different group of fast bowlers compared to that of the Test side that played against the same opponent last week.

The ODI side involves pace bowling options in the form of Mustafizur Rahman, Saifuddin, Al Amin Hossain, Shafiul Islam and captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza.

Whereas, the most successful paceman from the Zimbabwe Test, Abu Jayed, was found attending the practice session Friday as a “net bowler” at Sylhet International Cricket Stadium.

Bangladesh’s Test squad against Zimbabwe in Dhaka also had pace bowlers Taskin Ahmed and Ebadat Hossain.

Mahmudullah warms up BCB

The scenario is refreshing in that the national think tank has finally been able to come out from their traditional mindset – solely depending on the spinners at home.

The culture of including a player in all formats of the game for performing well in only one format is something the decision makers are surely not considering now.

The sporting wickets developed at home recently for both international matches and domestic tournaments have also boosted the faster bowlers.

Mustafizur and all-rounder Mahmudullah are two cases in point.

Mustafizur was considered not so long ago as a pace bowling option for Bangladesh across all formats whereas now, he is only being thought of for the limited-overs.

Saifuddin after a nets session BCB

He was in the Test squad but the message from head coach Russell Domingo was clear – he is not there to play but just to learn training in the sidelines of a particular game.

Mahmudullah, also, has recently been advised to up his game in the limited-overs, and was not considered for the Zimbabwe Test.

The scenario for seamer-allrounder Saifuddin is similar to that of Mustafizur. 

Domingo is of the opinion that Saifuddin needs to develop his game to match the standard of longer version cricket.

“So far, I have played 33 international games, including ODIs and T20Is, and I can say I got some success. I will be making a comeback after five months [since playing his last T20I against Afghanistan in September last year] and I feel everything new now,” said Saifuddin to the media.

Mohammad Naim shows the full face of his bat BCB

“This place is like this and as long as you keep performing you will be in the team or else you will lose the place. If I get the opportunity [Sunday], I will have to start fresh, whether it’s batting or bowling,” added Saifuddin, who is on verge of making a comeback after recovering from a long-term back injury. 

The right-arm pacer last played against Pakistan in the World Cup 2019.

The intention is unique and praiseworthy and to find success with the latest venture, the players should be given enough chances and assurances.

The players should be able to play with freedom, which again, is something that is being taken care of recently.

With that said, like many times in the past in Bangladesh cricket when a thought process was undertaken but quickly forgotten of, let’s just hope things are different this time around.