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Tigers seek bowling all-rounder

  • Published at 08:11 pm October 13th, 2018
Bangladesh cricketer Saifuddin celebrates with teammates

Selector Bashar, who was also a former captain of Bangladesh, explained the media why Saifuddin has been chosen over Soumya

Bangladesh are looking for a bowling all-rounder in the No 7 position in their batting line-up for  the ODI home series against Zimbabwe, informed selector Habibul Bashar to the media at Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka Saturday. 

Bangladesh have tried Sabbir Rahman on a few occasions before deploying Mosaddek Hossain in that pivotal role recently. Even Soumya Sarkar, who played mainly as a top-order batsman in the past, has played a couple of matches in that position during last month’s Asia Cup. Sabbir is now facing his ban term for disciplinary breach and Mosaddek has been dropped for his poor form. 

In these circumstances, Bangladesh have picked Saifuddin, a bowling all-rounder, for the home series to fill the gap.  

However, the inclusion of 21-year old Saifuddin, who has played three ODIs so far, scoring just 30 runs and picking up just one wicket at an average of 75, has also raised some eyebrows as his track record is not very good.  

But selector Bashar, who was also a former captain of Bangladesh, explained the media why Saifuddin has been chosen over Soumya.  

“Previously we have also tried with Sabbir in No 7, he is also a batsman.  Now we want to change, we want to use a bowling all-rounder in that position. When we will tour abroad, then we might need an extra bowling option in the playing XI rather than a proper batsman. We have a long batting line-up at the moment. Upcoming Zimbabwe series is a good chance for us to experiment in that (No 7) position,” Bashar said.  

“We are searching a bowling all-rounder in the No 7 position who mainly bowls 10 overs and also can can make valuable contributions with the bat in late middle-order if needed. Soumya is a batting all-rounder. Soumya bowls quite well but he is not a genuine bowler. That’s why we have chosen Saifuddin ahead of Soumya in this tournament,” the selector added. 

Bangladesh also had Ariful Haque in the squad for last few series but the right-hander has played only six T20Is and is yet to make his ODI debut. Bashar informed that Ariful is not a bowling all-rounder yet for the team. As a result Saifudin got the nod.

“When Ariful arrived in the squad, he was also considered for his bowling. But later his batting was more focused. We can’t rely that Ariful may bowl 10 overs with his current form. He is more like a batsman for us rather than a genuine bowling all-rounder,” he concluded. 

Apart from three ODIs, Saifuddin has played six T20Is for the Tigers. He has played 41 List A matches so far and scored 446 runs and took 57 wickets.