Shakib Al Hasan Returns To Test And T20I Squads For Tour Of Zimbabwe
Shakib Al Hasan has returned to Bangladesh’s Test and T20I squads, while Nurul Hasan‘s hot recent form in the domestic circuit has won him spots in all three squads – numbering 30 – for the tour of Zimbabwe later this month. Only one brand-new face figures in the touring party, 20-year-old Shamim Hossain, who has been named in the squad for the T20Is.
Shakib and Nurul are the only inclusions in the 17-man Test squad, named for the one-off game in Harare from July 7. “We are happy to have our best player available in all three formats,” Minhajul Abedin, the chief selector, said. “It will boost our team. We are hopeful that it will positively impact their performance.”
Shakib’s last Test was against West Indies in February, after which he missed the Tests against Sri Lanka because of his IPL commitment with the Kolkata Knight Riders. He also returned to the T20I squad for the first time since September 2019, as he missed Bangladesh’s New Zealand tour in March because of a thigh injury.
Shamim, who was part of Bangladesh’s Under-19 World Cup-winning side in 2020, impressed with his batting in the lower-middle order in two domestic T20 tournaments recently, and Abedin said that the youngster possessed the skills needed for success in T20s.
“We have been monitoring Shamim Hossain since he joined the high-performance squad after playing in the Under-19s,” Abedin said. “He played well against Ireland A, and then he continued to do the same in the shorter version tournaments. I am hopeful that his skills would help us in the T20Is.”
Nurul, the 27-year-old wicketkeeper-batter who played the last of his 14 international matches back in 2018, has made 346 runs for Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club in the ongoing Dhaka Premier League T20s, which helped take his team into the Super League stage, his runs coming at a strike rate of 151.75.
“You have to look at his recent performance,” Abedin said. “The selection panel is satisfied. He also impressed the team management when he was with the Test squad in Sri Lanka. The team management will take a decision, judging the condition, on whether he plays or not, but we are confident that he will play.”
Taijul Islam and Rubel Hossain have also been included in the ODI side, although there was no place for Soumya Sarkar or Mahedi Hasan. Rubel has recovered from a back injury, while Abedin said that Islam had been picked as the team management wanted an additional left-arm spinner in the ODI side.
Tamim Iqbal, who took leave during the New Zealand T20Is, has returned to the T20I side alongside Shakib, Nurul and leg spinner Aminul Islam. Aminul’s return after more than a year meant that the selectors have turned to a leg spinner after a gap.
The BCB, meanwhile, has approved Mushfiqur Rahim’s request to sit out the T20Is, while the selectors have also dropped Mosaddek Hossain, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mohammad Mithun, Al Amin Hossain, Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Rubel Hossain from Bangladesh’s previous squad in this format.
The tour, starting in July, will take place despite a government directive to suspend all sporting activity in the country as part of measures aimed at containing Covid-19 after Zimbabwe’s Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) gave Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) permission on Tuesday to go ahead with it.
The tour will consist of one Test, three ODIs and three T20Is. All matches will take place behind closed doors in Harare.
This will be the second men’s international series Zimbabwe will host since the pandemic began, after successfully staging two Tests and three T20Is against Pakistan in April. Zimbabwe have also hosted the Pakistan women’s side and the South Africa A side, although both those series were cut short. Pakistan Women left Zimbabwe because of flight restrictions, while the South Africa A team left before completing their second four-day fixture last week when stricter restrictions were introduced. At the time, ZC had petitioned SRC to allow the match to be completed, and they agreed, but South Africa A had already left the country.
The Bangladesh contingent will leave for Zimbabwe on June 27.
Test squad: Mominul Haque (capt), Tamim Iqbal, Shadman Islam, Saif Hassan, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Liton Das, Yasir Ali, Nurul Hasan, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Nayeem Hasan, Abu Jayed, Taskin Ahmed, Ebadat Hossain, Shoriful Islam.
ODI squad: Tamim Iqbal (capt), Mohammad Naim, Liton Das, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mohammad Mithun, Afif Hossain, Nurul Hasan, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Rubel Hossain, Shoriful Islam
T20I squad: Mahmudullah (capt), Tamim Iqbal, Mohammad Naim, Liton Das, Shakib Al Hasan, Soumya Sarkar, Afif Hossain, Shamim Hossain, Nurul Hasan, Nasum Ahmed, Mahedi Hasan, Aminul Islam, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Shoriful Islam