Mashrafe Bin Mortaza doesn’t want to miss any more cricket after becoming one of fifteen national cricketers to be included in the BCB players’ contract for 2012.
The contract, which will run from January 1 to December 31, was approved on Sunday in the board meeting with skipper Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal, Abdur Razzak and Mashrafe being put up in Grade A+, the top among the five contract catagories.
Vice-captain Mahmudullah Riyad and Imrul Kayes have been placed in Grade A while Grade B will have Rubel Hossain, Shafiul Islam and Nazmul Hossain while Nasir Hossain and Jahurul Islam are in Grade C. The rookie grade has gone to Nazimuddin, Shuvagata Hom Chowdhury and Elias Sunny.
It was a particularly auspicious event for Mashrafe who made a successful comeback to competitive cricket after a knee injury that took out another eleven months out of his career. Ever since his international debut in 2001, Mashrafe has missed 32 Tests (played 36), 94 ODIs (played 124) and five T20s (played 13) for the national team.
“I haven’t set any goals in particular for this year ahead but I want to continue playing. I have missed more than hundred games for Bangladesh, I think. So I want to make sure I play more cricket because if I had played those games that I’ve missed, I could have taken more than 300 wickets till now,” said the man who has taken 245 international wickets thus far.
“Of course it makes me happy, but the return was more important to me. It was necessary for me to make the comeback because that’s why I had the surgery back in May,” Mashrafe said yesterday.
“But it isn’t just the comeback, I always said that I have to perform and stay in the team. There are things which usually stay out of my control but I would like to manage whatever I can, as far as my fitness and performance is concerned. My focus is on cricket and it is important to be among the contracted players,” he added.
Unlike most of his colleagues, Mashrafe has continued to train at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium every morning after the Asia Cup in a bid to keep injuries away. “I have the tendency to get injured more than anyone else, as you may know. So I want to keep training and stay fit, not lose focus at all,” he said.
-With The Daily Star input