Sabbir Rahman, Anamul Haque and Abu Jayed were dropped from Bangladesh's ODI squad after having been in the fold for the Tigers' victorious ODI series in West Indies as the national selectors yesterday announced a 15-member squad for the upcoming Asia Cup scheduled to begin from September 15 in UAE.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Mithun was rewarded with a recall for his fine performance with Bangladesh A's tour of Ireland while all-rounder Ariful Haque was also named in the squad.
Chief selector Minhajul Abedin informed that Sabbir's exclusion was brought about by a combination of a long stretch of poor form and his recent off-field disciplinary issues -- the batsman will face a hearing with the disciplinary committee tomorrow.
“Sabbir's exclusion was a mixture of both his off-field incidents and his recent poor performance as he was out of form for a long time now,” Minhajul told The Daily Star yesterday.
Anamul was unable to utilise his opportunities -- the right-handed opener scored just 88 runs in the seven consecutive games he was picked for since making a return to the ODI side after three years.
The selectors are considering Mithun as Sabbir's replacement in the lower middle order and Minhajul added that the team management has kept faith on another wicketkeeper-batsman, Liton Das, as the Tamim Iqbal's opening partner in the Asia Cup.
Young batsman Nazmul Hossain was also retained in the squad. The left-hander did not play a game in the series against West Indies as an understudy to the first-choice openers.
Ariful is expected to play the role of a batting all-rounder who can score quick runs in the lower middle order and chip in with his medium pacers.
“He [Ariful] has already made his T20I debut and also performed in the domestic circuit, batting well in the T20s after coming in at number seven or eight. We were looking for a batting all-rounder who could also bowl medium pacers and he was the better choice ahead of [Mohammad] Saifuddin,” he added.
Vice-captain Shakib Al Hasan meanwhile was also named in the squad, which means that he will be available for the tournament. There were questions about whether the all-rounder would undergo surgery for his injured left little finger because of an injury sustained during the tri-nation final earlier this year and one that has been troubling him since. Shakib's inclusion means that he is likely going to miss the upcoming home series against Zimbabwe in October to undergo the surgery.
Masrafe Bin Mortaza (Captain), Shakib Al Hasan (Vice Captain), Tamim Iqbal, Md Mithun, Litton Das, Mushfiqur Rahim, Ariful Haque, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Nazmul Hossain, Mehedy Hasan Miraz, Nazmul Islam, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Abu Haider, Mominul Haque.