Dhaka, Oct 18 (IANS) Living with the label of Bangladesh's limited-overs specialist for a long time, Sabbir Hossain is on the verge of making his bow in Test cricket.
It was difficult to imagine the 24-year-old in Test whites even a few days ago. But after he broke into the squad for the first Test against England, it has become a probability, reports bdnews24.com.
Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusingha has said the team management is looking for a combination which includes Sabbir in the playing 11.
In Twenty20s and One-Days, his batting technique has often come under scrutiny. But he shrugged off all criticism to be promoted to number three where he has been showing good potential.
The right-handed batsman, who can also bowl useful leg-breaks, has an ordinary first-class record. He played 35 matches in eight years, hit three centuries and averaged 38.71.
But the selectors paid more attention to how he has grown as a player while Hathurusingha has always been optimistic about the youngster.
Sabbir's doubts about himself, however, perished after two key knocks for Bangladesh A on their tours to India and South Africa last year.
On the brink of his first Test cap, Sabbir is drawing hope from his recent impressive form.
"The Bengaluru century came under very tough circumstances. The wicket was also very difficult. The century gave me the hope that I can play well in the longer version against quality bowling attack," Sabbir said on Monday.
"Later playing well in South Africa strengthened my self-confidence."
"Everybody took me as a limited-overs specialist then. So the two innings were very good for me. I realised that I had the ability to play well at this level."
The self-assurance drove Sabbir to always play in his own style, regardless of the wicket, conditions or circumstances.
"Longer version doesn't simply mean not playing my shots. These innings helped me realise that I can play my way and be successful," Sabbir added.
"I have to be a bit careful with ball selection but apart from that there isn't much difference. The ball I am able to hit can be hit in any sort of cricket."
Sabbir's aggression and ability to play big knocks has thrilled Hathurusingha as the number of batsmen achieving success by resorting to similar tactics has risen in modern times.