Bangladesh ace all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan has been rested for the three-match ODI series against Sri Lanka as Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) announced a 14-member squad at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium on Tuesday.
Along with Shakib, Liton Das was also granted leave while pacer Abu Jayed Rahi found no place from the Bangladesh’s 15-member World Cup squad.Taijul Islam and Anamul Haque Bijoy filled the two void spots, on the back of their superb form.
The three-match ODI series marked the return of Taijul Islam in the 50-over format after almost two years. He played his last ODI against Afghanistan in September 2016.
Bijoy played his last ODI against West Indies in 2018 in which he went through a series of low scores.
Shakib who was in exceptional form in the recently concluded ICC World Cup 2019, scoring 606 runs along with picking up 11 wickets, earlier requested BCB not to consider him for the series, slating to be held from July 26 to July 31 in Colombo.
BCB granted his plea as he is supposed to perform the ‘Holy Hajj’. Liton is expected to get married on July 28, the reason he wasn’t considered, while Jayed is recently included in the BCB A setup after completing his ICC World Cup 2019 journey without getting any opportunity to play.
There was however injury concern regarding captain Mashrafe Mortaza, senior players Mahmudullah Riyad and Mushriqur Rahim but they were deemed fit to play and included into the squad.Taijul, who is considered as Test material, played just four ODIs since his debut in 2014 and is set to join the team in Sri Lanka straight from India, where he is playing for the BCB XI at Dr (Capt) K Thimmappaiah Memorial Cricket Tournament (Mini Ranji Trophy).
He claimed 8 wickets for 89 runs in the drawn four-day match against Vidarbha Cricket Association. Bijoy with 37 ODIs under his belt also scored 121 runs in the first innings of that match.
“It’s a very important series as we are playing the series right after the World Cup. We didn’t make drastic changes here considering the World Cup squad. As we don’t have Shakib and Liton, we included two players in their places and dropped one,” BCB Selector Minhajul Abedin Nannu told reporters at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium on Tuesday.
“We need a left-arm spinner so Taijul is going with the team. He is now playing in India. We have included Taijul. Anamul Haque Bijoy is going there as a replacement of Liton,” he said.
“We have five one-day matches against Afghanistan A at home and our BCB XI is also participating in a four-day tournament in India. Considering all these factors, we have made a 14-member squad. In our tour to Sri Lanka, we will be playing just three ODIs,” he said.
Though there are some injury concerns. Minhajul believes that he will get everyone before the three-match ODI series as they have got enough time to recover after returning from ICC World Cup 2019 while he added that they should get over the World Cup journey and start everything afresh.
“They have got enough time for recovery after the World Cup. Success is very important in any series. Our World Cup campaign has ended and now we are starting a new season,” said Minhajul.
“This series is very important. I think players will take it professionally and we think that we will do well in the series,” told Abedin.
“According to the reports we get from Physio, Mahmudullah doesn’t have a huge injury issues. Tomorrow (today) the players will report here (SBNCS) and till now and on the basis of what we have been informed, everyone appears to be fine,” he said.
“We play every series with the goal to win. We came close to fulfilling our expectations in ICC World Cup 2019 but now we have to start afresh from this series. We have to keep our eyes on ODI rankings from now on so this series is crucial because of the points it offers,” he concluded.
Bangladesh Squad: Mashrafe Mortaza (Captain), Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mohammad Mithun, Mosaddek Hossain, Sabbir Rahman, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mehedi Hasan Miraz, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Anamul Haque Bijoy, Taijul Islam.