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Ashraful needs to show extraordinary perform to be considered for national team again says BCB chief selector

Saif Hasnat
943   //    12 Aug 2018, 23:29 IST

Bangladesh v Ireland: Group B - 2011 ICC World Cup
Bangladesh v Ireland: Group B - 2011 ICC World Cup

12 August 2018, is the last day of Mohammad Ashraful's five-year-ban. He was punished for the involvement in match-fixing and spot-fixing in the 2013 Bangladesh Premier League (BPL). But, from August 13, 2018, he will be eligible to play again for Bangladesh national side.

Ashraful might get another chance to repair the damage he had made to his career if he performs extraordinary well in the upcoming domestic seasons, says Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) chief selector Minhazul Abedin while talking to reporters on Sunday.

"Ashraful needs to perform extraordinary well in domestic cricket to be considered for another national call. Because he was out of the highest level of cricket for a long time of five years, we will need to see his fitness now," says Minhazul.

What BCB chief selectors have said, could be a lifeline for Ashraful who was allowed to play only List-A and First-Class cricket in previous two seasons of domestic cricket. He scored five centuries in the last season of Dhaka Premier League cricket, a 50-over league. But, critics were unhappy about his striking rate.

Jalal Ahmed Chowdhury, who was the coach of Kalabagan Krira Chakra, for whom Ashraful hit those centuries, said, "regardless where and how you did, a century is always a century. You can not avoid the confidence that you can achieve by hitting a ton. I think Ashraful can play more wonderful cricket if he looks after his fitness with a great care and still he has plenty of cricket in him," in an interview with the reporters.

Ashraful, who celebrated his 34th birthday just 36 days ago, is surely going to fight against the time. In Bangladesh, it is not usual for cricket selectors to rely on the players who are not in the highest level of cricket for a long time.

But, chief selector Minhazul also has some words of hope for Ashraful regarding this, 'if you can perform better and maintain a great fitness to play international cricket, being elder is not a problem. There is no question about what Ashraful can do and he gave Bangladeshi spectators many memorable performances.'

When the whole country is waiting for the return of their first cricket-super-star, Ashraful also expressed his eagerly desire to play once again for the country. On the eve of ending his five-year-ban, Ashraful said, "I am waiting for 13 August 2018, for a long time now. I will be eligible to play any form of cricket after this date and my final goal is to play again for my country. If I can, it will be great ever achievement of my life."

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Saif Hasnat
Covering cricket in Bangladesh since 2013. Apart from being a Cricket Reporter, he writes lyrics and stories.
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