Four cricketers – all-rounder Shubhagata Hom, left-arm spinner Taijul Islam and pace bowlers Robiul Islam and Shafiul Islam – have been added to the Bangladesh squad for the two-Test series against West Indies, the Bangladesh Cricket Board announced on Monday.
Of the four players, Taijul, who is also part of the Twenty20 squad, already joined the Tigers in West Indies and the other three left home on Monday.
The first Test will be held at St Vincent’s Arnos Vale from September 5-9 while Bangladesh will end the tour at St Lucia with the last Test from September 13-17 at Beausejour.
The inclusion of Shubhagata is a surprise, though the selectors already put some faith in him by adding him to Bangladesh squad for the upcoming Asian Games.
Chief selector Faruk Ahmed said they have considered Shubhagata’s new found skill in off-spin bowling which made him a decent batting all-rounder.
‘Shubhagata is recently bowling well as an off-spinner. He is also a good batsman with sound technique,’ Faruk told New Age.
‘He is proving his abilities as an all-rounder. He played ODIs in the past, so he is no stranger to international cricket,’ said Faruk.
Shubhagata was given the nod ahead of all-rounder Farhad Reza, who had a better batting average in first-class cricket tournament than the off-spinning all-rounder last season.
Shubhagata, who played the last of his four ODIs in 2011, said he has learnt a lot when he was out of the team.
Shubhagata is looking forward to making a fresh start after not being able to carry with the national team earlier.
‘Learnt a lot of lesson during these years,’ said Shubhagata. ‘Previously I used to think only about my batting. But now I concentrated a lot on my bowling.’
Faruk said they included Taijul as he is considered to be the best left-arm spinner at the moment.
Pace bowler Robiul is a regular player in Test squad for the past two seasons but Faruk said they included Shafiul as there was no better option available.
Pace bowler Mashrafee bin Murtaza and Taskin Ahmed Abdur Razzak will return home to accommodate the Test players, said the BCB.
-With New Age input