Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes has urged star player Shakib Al Hasan to prove his top dog status at the upcoming World Cup. Shakib is entering his fourth World Cup as world’s top ODI all-rounder.
One wicket away from joining an exclusive club of limited-overs to have taken 250 wickets and surpassed 5,000 runs, you’d be forgiven for thinking the 32-year-old’s stock could not be any higher.
But the all-rounder has been in and out of action since last year, missing crucial matches due to injuries he suffered at the beginning of 2018. Rhodes believes that Shakib needs to remind everyone of his presence.
“Shakib is fine,” Rhodes was quoted as saying by ICC after Bangladesh’s washed out warm-up game against Pakistan in Cardiff.
“He’s in a great position physically. He had a little problem in Ireland but he’s got over that and is raring to go.
“He’s looking forward to a wonderful tournament. I think he’s got a bit of a point to prove and he probably thinks that as well.
“He seems to have been a little bit forgotten but now he’s back as the world’s No.1 all-all-rounder in ODI cricket - and that’s where we think he belongs.
“But he’s got a point to prove to make sure everybody else believes that.”
Another player that the Tigers camp will be a bit concerned about is the fitness of Mahmudullah Riyad who has not been able to bowl lately due to a shoulder injury.
Rhodes informed that Riyad is still recuperating and relaxing his shoulders as per requirement. “Mahmudullah’s shoulder is coming along a little slowly. I don’t think it would have been possible for him to bowl against Pakistan.
“We’re very optimistic that we can get him up and running for the early stages of the World Cup.
“It may affect our balance slightly, but the good thing about Mahmudullah is that he doesn’t need a lot of practice to be good at bowling."