Monday, 27 February 2017

Mustafizur Rahman returns for Test series against Sri Lanka

Bangladesh left-arm seamer Mustafizur Rahman has been recalled for the two-Test series against Sri Lanka that begins next month.
Rahman, last featured in Tests in August 2015 and has been preserved for the limited overs format for Bangladesh. The 21-year-old was recently not considered for selection in the recently concluded game against India in Hyderabad, to give him more time to recover from a shoulder surgery.
However, after proving his fitness in the domestic cricket, Mustafizur will replace Shafiul Islam in the squad that recently toured India.
Also returning to the squad is Rubel Hossain, who recently picked 10 wickets in two matches for South Zone in the domestic Bangladesh Cricket League.
Imrul Kayes, who picked a thigh injury during the warm-up game against India A has not recovered completely with Mosaddek Hossain continuing to retain his place in the squad.
The two Test matches will be played between 7th March and 19th March with Galle and Colombo being the venues.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

'Ready for all formats'

Mustafizur Rahman is not exactly a man of few words. But when you put a camera in front of him -- or a dozen cameras in this case -- you will not be able to get much out of the youngster.
You will,
at most, get two sentences without a break, before he gives a blank look that suggests that journalists should proceed to the next question.
This has been the case ever since his debut and yesterday, when he came to talk to reporters at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur following Bangladesh's training session, was no different.
The one thing that was certain following the three-minute press conference though, was that the pacer was eager to get back to the international game.
Even before anyone asked him anything officially, he quietly but quite excitedly said: “Bhai, I am fine. Everything is fine. I have no problems now.”
If the 21-year-old goes on to play the first Test against Sri Lanka, he will return to the longer format after a gap of more than year. The last time he played Test cricket, he scalped three wickets in one over against South Africa in July 2015.
Various injuries and the shoulder surgery have however kept him away from the format ever since.
While the left-armer did seem quite unsure about himself following the New Zealand series, he seemed on top of things yesterday.
“I was not well for a long time and I could not play due to the injury. I was yet to get into the habit of bowling. But now I feel good. I could not go to India but then I played two Bangladesh Cricket League (BCL) games and that did me a lot of good,” he said.
In his last BCL game he bowled 31 overs and that was what helped him revive his confidence.
“If I get a chance, I will try to do my best. In the BCL games I tried to bowl fast and swing the ball. The cutter, or the slower is not that effective in four-day matches. So I tried to bowl in good areas and get into my rhythm,” explained Mustafizur.
From throwing long balls to gradually bowling at a hundred per cent, Mustafizur had to work really hard in order to be finally deemed completely fit for the Sri Lanka series. He now claims to be able to bowl with 100 per cent intensity.
“I am ready for all the formats. If I get the chance in T20s and ODIs, I will do my best there as well,” said Mustafizur.

Mushfiqur optimistic of 'chance' against Sri Lanka

Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim has said that his team has a chance to challenge home side Sri Lanka during the two-Test series that begins on March 7. Mushfiqur lined up a number of reasons that would be to the visitors' advantage including the lack of senior players in the Sri Lanka line-up and his side's recent form and experience.
For the first time in Tests between the two sides, Bangladesh will be facing a Sri Lanka line-up without Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Tillakaratne Dilshan or Thilan Samaraweera. Three of these four batsmen were the heaviest scorers against Bangladesh and as a bonus, Angelo Mathews, who averages 57 against Bangladesh, will also be missing due to a hamstring injury.
"They [Sri Lanka] are without some of the players who have been doing well for a long time as well as their regular captain Angelo Mathews," Mushfiqur said. "They would also be aware of Bangladesh doing well in recent times. We also have Sri Lankans in our coaching staff who can provide us with key information. So taking everything into consideration, we do have a chance in front of us. If we can play our best cricket, the result will be in our favour. We have been able to raise our standard of cricket. It has also contributed to the expectations placed on us. People now believe that if Bangladesh plays well, they can win against any team.
Mushfiqur said that playing their third consecutive Test series in the span of three months will keep Bangladesh tuned to the format. He was also banking heavily on three of his most talented bowlers to bring him wickets and stability.