Ashraful fails form test
It was not experience rather form that was considered when the national selectors announced a 14-member squad for the two-match Test series against England without former national skipper Mohammad Ashraful.
The axe fell on Ashraful for the three-match one-day series against England due to a poor run of form. Subsequently the right-hander continued his poor run of form in the domestic competition as well as against England in the three-day match which sealed his fate.
But as expected middle-order batsman Rokibul Hasan retained his place in the Test team after his impressive 107* that was followed by a fifty in the second innings against England at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong.
"At the moment he (Ashraful) is totally out of form. We feel that it would be better for him to score some runs in the coming domestic matches to get back his confidence. There is no doubt about his class as a batsman and we are hopeful he will come back to the team very soon," chief selector Rafiqul Alam explained the reason behind the omission of the ace batsman.
Left-hander Zunaed Siddiqui has also been struggling but his fifty against India and 37 in the second innings of the three-day warm-up match was good enough to retain the place while Aftab Ahmed also looked in out of touch after his return from ICL but his 46 in the 3rd ODI gave the selectors an impression that the right-hander is all set to get back to his rhythm.
"Zunaed looked good in the second innings (of the practice match against England) and he had also looked good in New Zealand.
"We are hopeful that he will deliver in the number three
position. On the other hand Aftab got back his confidence," Rafiqul defended the two batsmen's selections.
The evidence was there that the Bangladesh team think-tank has been emphasising on the spin attack at their home condition as left-arm spinner Enamul Haque was recalled. Captain Shakib Al Hasan and Abdur Razzak, who impressed the selectors by his performance in the one-day series, are the other two left-arm spinners in the team.
"We took one extra spinner as we believe that the spin bowlers will make a good impact in the home conditions," said Rafiqul.
Enamul however was not too excited as he wants to be a member of the playing eleven.
"I was in the squad against India but didn't play any match. I had a decent performance against West Indies and Zimbabwe but still it was not good enough for me to continue playing the matches. So, the most important issue for me whether I will play or not," said Enamul.