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Habibul Bashar excited about inclusion of new face to Bangladesh squad

Saif Hasnat
583   //    13 Oct 2018, 18:15 IST

Habibul Bashar while talking to the media at the BCB media lounge on Saturday
Habibul Bashar while talking to the media at the BCB media lounge on Saturday

The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) have announced a 15-member squad to face Zimbabwe in a three-match ODI series starting from 21 October. The BCB selectors included Fazle Mahmud Rabbi, a 30-year-old all-rounder, in the team and he is the only uncapped pick for the Tigers. Habibul Bashar, the former Bangladesh captain, who is currently serving Bangladesh cricket as a selector, is excited about the inclusion of Fazle Mahmud. 

The southpaw all-rounder started his career back in 2004, and he has been doing well in the domestic circuit. Despite several ups and downs along the way, Fazle remains static on playing the game of cricket. 

However, the all-rounder once was known for his big ability, but he has changed his style of game and learned to bat on to play long innings. The left-handed batsman showcased a decent performance during the Ireland tour of Bangladesh A where he scored 136 runs in three 50-over innings at an average of 45.33 with two 50-plus scores to his name. 

"The career pathway of Fazle is very interesting. He was a member of High-Performance unit of BCB five-six years ago. He seemed to be a promising star at that time. He went through a bad patch afterwards. But, since the last three years, he changed his style of play and became matured as a batsman." Habibul said during an interview to the media on Saturday morning at the BCB headquarters. 

"He is very conscious about his fitness, and his bowling is also effective, though, not like Shakib Al Hasan. These are the reasons behind his selection. We hope he will be able to fulfil the demand of the team." Habibul further added. 

Bangladesh are in dire need to have an aggressive batsman at number six who can be handy for the captain to choose to give the ball for a few overs as well. All eyes were on Soumya Sarkar before the squad had announced. But, Fazle Mahmud took the precedence over Soumya as the solution of number six with the capacity of effective left-arm orthodox bowling. 

"With the ability to bat according to the demand of the team, Fazle Mahmud can bowl as well, and this is the factor that prompted us to consider him for the senior side. I have been watching his game for a long time now, and he seems mature enough to be selected for the national duty," the former captain further said. 

There is another point that made the inclusion of Fazle Mahmud talk of the town. The all-rounder is 30-year-old, and this is a rare attempt for the Bangladeshi selectors to consider a player who has entered into his thirties. Habibul thinks that the fitness level of Fazle Mahmud is higher than other 30-year-old cricketers of Bangladesh. 

Fazle Mahmud played 68 First-class and 80 List-A matches before being considered for the national team. He scored 3715 runs in the longer format of the game at an average of 33.16. And, he scored 2200 runs in the 50-over format at an average of 30.98 with bagging more than 50 wickets in domestic cricket.