Former T20 skipper Mahmudullah was left out from the Bangladesh squad for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup in Australia as the Bangladesh Cricket Board announced a 15-member squad for the marquee tournament on Wednesday.
Mahmudullah’s omission didn’t come as a total surprise considering his recent performance in the shortest format failed to impress the selectors.
Apart from Mahmudullah, five more cricketers – Anamul Haque Bijoy, Mohammad Naim, Mahedi Hasan, Parvez Hossain Emon and Mushfiqur Rahim, who were part of Bangladesh squad in the recently-concluded T20 Asia Cup in UAE, failed to get a place in the World Cup squad.
Mahmudullah and four others faced an axe while Mushfiqur wasn’t considered for the World Cup squad as he announced his T20I retirement after the Asia Cup.
Chief selector Minhajul Abedin said that they decided to drop Mahmudullah as they’re working on forming a team with a one-year plan in mind.
“We have respect for Mahmudullah who has played well for the national team. It is hard to deny his contribution. He has given long service to the nation. He took Bangladesh to a good position,” Minhajul told reporters while announcing the World Cup squad in Mirpur on Wednesday.
“Our T20 consultant has given us a one-year plan, which will take us in a different direction. We have gone with this plan. We haven’t been doing well in this format. We had to also deal with plenty of injuries in the last six months. We dropped Mahmudullah taking everyone’s opinion,” he added.
Liton Das, Nurul Hasan Sohan, Hasan Mahmud and Yasir Ali, who missed the Asia Cup due to respective injury problems, have recovered from their injuries and were also named in the side.
“We have discussed and analyzed a lot before deciding on having Shanto (Najmul) as a backup opener. He did relatively better in the BPL than the other local players. He also scored a few hundred. Everyone agreed on this decision too,” said the selector.
The 15-member squad, along with four travelling reserves - Shoriful Islam, Rishad Hossain, Mahedi and Soumya Sarkar - will also be part of Bangladesh’s tri-series campaign in New Zealand, which will be held before the ICC T20 World Cup.
Pakistan are the other team in the tri-series, scheduled to take place in Christchurch on October 7-14.
The T20 World Cup will get underway in Australia on October 16 and Bangladesh will appear in Group 2 of the Super 12 stage alongside India, Pakistan, South Africa and two qualifiers.
The Tigers will begin their T20 World Cup campaign against Group A runners-up on October 24 in Hobart while they will then face South Africa and Group B champions on October 27 and 30 respectively in Sydney and Brisbane.
Bangladesh will play against India on November 2 in Adelaide while they will face Pakistan in their last Super 12 match at the same venue on November 6.