Following his inspired performance in the first Test in Galle, Mohammad Ashraful has received a recall to the ODI squad for the subsequent one-day international series against Sri Lanka which will get underway on March 23.
Also recalled to the fold are slow-left arm spinner Mosharraf Hossain, who last represented Bangladesh in March, 2008 and medium-pacer Nazmul Hossain. All-rounder Ziaur Rahman, who came as an injury replacement for Abul Hasan in the last ODI series, has been retained. Missing though is Mashrafe bin Mortaza who failed to recover sufficiently from a heel injury to take his place in the 15-member squad.
“We went through Mashrafe's medical report yesterday afternoon and it was decided that he will not be available for selection,” chief selector Akram Khan told The Daily Star yesterday.
“(Mosharraf Hossain) Rubel has been performing well for a while now. Elias Sunny has been out of form lately,
so that brought him into contention and we decided to give Rubel a chance,” added Akram.
Along with Sunny, Naeem Islam and Shafiul Islam, both of who played in Bangladesh's last ODI series against the West Indies were also not included in the side.
While Sunny was dropped due to his lack of form, Naeem and Shafiul are injured.
“The injuries have definitely put us in a spot of bother. That's the reason for so many changes to the side. However, this also gives an opportunity to a number of new players to show their worth,” said Akram.
Of all the changes in the side, it was Mosharraf's recall that received maximum attention. The player—who was left out of the national team after he joined the Indian Cricket League in 2008— has been a consistent performer in domestic cricket.
“I have had to work very hard and be really patient to get back to the team, so I am obviously very glad,” Rubel told The Daily Star. “I never targeted a particular time period to try to enter the national team. In the last three years my target was just to play good cricket regularly,” he added.
The bowler, who captained Central Zone to the Bangladesh Cricket League championship, stated that he was a lot more confident than before. “A lot has changed in international cricket. The rules, the attitude of the batsman etc and I have tried to change my game accordingly in domestic cricket. So, I am a lot more confident than before and I hope to make it through to the team,” he added.
Bangladesh will play three one-day internationals and a T20.
Mushfiqur Rahim (captain), Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque, Jahurul Islam, Mohammad Ashraful, Muminul Hoque, Mahmud Ullah (Vice Captain), Nasir Hossain, Shohag Gazi, Abdur Razzak, Rubel Hossain, Nazmul Hossain, Mosharraf Hossain, Abul Hasan, Ziaur Rahman.