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24 January, 2019 00:00 00 AM

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Sabbir named for NZ tour as BCB reduces his ban

Pacer Taskin returns as uncapped Naeem also make room
Sports Reporter, Dhaka
Sabbir named for NZ tour as BCB reduces his ban

Bangladesh Cricket Board reduced the international ban on Sabbir Rahman, paving his inclusion in the 15-member squad for the upcoming ODI series against New Zealand that also mark the return of Taskin Ahmed and uncapped Naeem Hasan.

Sabbir was included despite not making huge amount of runs in domestic cricket and his only noteworthy performance was the innings of 85 runs that he scored in the Bangladesh Premier League.

The inclusion of Sabbir was the talking point during the press conference attended by the national selectors to announce the New Zealand bound ODI squad followed by the Test squad for the tour of New Zealand yesterday.

The Bangladesh Cricket Board on September 1 handed Sabbir Rahman a six-month ban from international cricket for his repeated off-field issues, the latest being his social network fiasco where he was alleged to have abused and threatened a fan on Facebook. According to the sanction Sabbir is expected to serve the ban until February 28 but chief selector Minhajul Abedin cleared the air by saying that he was included only after the disciplinary committee informed them about his availability while ODI skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza was adamant about his inclusion in the selection committee meeting.

“We were informed by the disciplinary committee that he is available and after we got the clearance we did include him in the squad.

The Board informed us that he is available from January 31 as they reduced his ban by one month,’’ Minhajul told reporters in a crowded press conference when his attention was drawn how they could include Sabbir despite serving a ban.

“Let me make one thing clear about Sabbir: he was included as per the strong insistence of the captain. The captain requested us firmly to include him, and we have agreed with the captain,’’ he said.

“The team wants someone in the squad who can bat lower down the order with the ability to handle the pacers well,’’ he said.

“We have included him keeping the New Zealand tour and the World Cup in mind. Let us see what he can do. The captain of the team and we are also confident about him,’’ he said.

Pace bowler Taskin Ahmed, who last played his ODI’s in 2017 before being dropped due to lack of form coupled by injury issues, also got his place back in ODI and Test squad.

Taskin was left out of the national team after his dismal show during Bangladesh’s South Africa tour back in 2017. He was recalled in the Nidahas Trophy in Sri Lanka in 2018 but failed to impress there as well.

Taskin recently had a great run in the ongoing season of Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) for Sylhet Sixers. He has taken 14 wickets in seven matches so far that helped him to get back his place.

Minhajul said Taskin’s form in the BPL has paved his way to the national steam selection.

“Taskin was suffering from injuries but he was under our rehabilitation programme. We have nursed him enough to get back to his old form. He has been doing well in BPL, and he came to our consideration for his recent show,” said Minhajul

“Taskin can bowl at express pace and that is something we considered before taking him as it will be helpful in those condition,’’ he said adding that they have included uncapped Naeem Hasan as a back-up of Mehidy Hasan in the ODI’s

Meanwhile selectors also announced the Test squad that saw the return of Tamim Iqbal, whose injury forced him missing the Test series against West Indies, Taskin Ahmed and Abu Jayed Rahi while Ariful Haque and Soumya Sarkar paved way for them.

ODI squad: Mashrafe Mortaza (captain), Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Liton Das, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Mehidy Hasan, Mohammad Mithun, Saifuddin, Nayeem Hasan, Taskin Ahmed, Sabbir Rahman.

IN: Nayeem Hasan, Taskin Ahmed, Sabbir Rahman OUT: Imrul Kayes, Nazmul Islam, Abu Hider, Ariful Haque.

Test squad: Shakib Al Hasan, Mohammad Mithun, Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Mehidy Hasan, Mustafizur Rahim, Taijul Islam, Khaled Ahmed, Nayeem Hasan, Shadman Islam, Liton Das, Tamim Iqbal, Abu Jayed, Taskin Ahmed

In: Tamim Iqbal, Abu Jayed, Taskin Ahmed OUT: Soumya Sarkar, Ariful Haque

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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