With his return to the fold a wide discussion has been triggered if the situation in the dressing room is the same when he had left, given the drastic change in situation that is now being faced by the most successful skipper in Bangladesh history
Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza has returned to the national dressing room after a hiatus of almost seven months.
The last time the experienced right-arm pacer was in action for the team was in July last year during the World Cup 2019 in England and Wales.
With his return to the fold a wide discussion has been triggered if the situation in the dressing room is the same when he had left, given the drastic change in situation that is now being faced by the most successful skipper in Bangladesh history.
Saga over his retirement from international cricket has been the biggest talking point in the cricketing fraternity of the country recently.
It has been observed on occasions that many junior cricketers, who were once his close companion, no longer envisage him his savior and the national selection panel are in dilemma over his selection in the team.
These things have made Mashrafe’s existence in the dressing room very uncomfortable to say the least.
Mashrafe, who has been undisputed leader on and off the field over the last few years, not even being informed before the biggest strike by Bangladesh cricketers in last October illustrates the situation perfectly.
Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hasan also said the three-match series against Zimbabwe will be the last for Mashrafe and the first game of the series will take place Sunday at Sylhet International Cricket Stadium.
Mashrafe was queried if he could sense any difference in the dressing room.
He replied tactfully.
“Everyone [players] has been playing matches. There was no ODI however, and I do not see any changes. Everyone here is professional and knows their duty. I do not see any reason for me to find any difficulties. At the end of the day I have played cricket with these cricketers so there is no reason to face any difficulty. It has happened before that we did not play an ODI in months but I returned to lead the team. It is nothing new and at the same time I would say everyone is professional here,” said Mashrafe to the media Saturday.
Bangladesh will be playing their first ODI since the three-match series defeat away to Sri Lanka in July last year.
There has been a major change in the selection policy with the board coming to the decision to have different sets of players for different formats of the game, with some common players as the core.
Host Bangladesh have come into the series with at least seven changes from the squad that played the previous ODI, and also almost a new set of coaching staff.
Mashrafe said it will take a bit of time for the team to settle down but that they have the winning taste having won the lone Test against Zimbabwe last week.
“We are playing this format after a long time so it will be there at the back of the mind in the first game. I hope we can be able to switch quickly while playing the game and doing the things right,” said Mashrafe.
“The start will be vital, be it with the ball or bat. The atmosphere in the team is good. There are some fresh faces in both players and staffs. The young players are eager to perform if given the opportunity. Everything is fine at the moment particularly because of winning the Test,” concluded the skipper.