Mosharraf eyes return from oblivion

September 9, 2016

Left-arm spinner Mosharraf Hossain Rubel is looking to make an impact after his surprise inclusion in the 20-member pool of players for the forthcoming one-day international series against Afghanistan and England. Mosharraf, who played last of his three ODIs in 2008, was on a personal tour in India when a Facebook message from one of his friends on August 27 changed his vision completely.
‘I had no idea I could be included in the team,’ Mosharraf told New Age on Thursday. ‘So, I went to Kolkata with my family after the end of High Performance camp.
‘Suddenly I got a message from a journalist friend who asked me to contact the selectors immediately. I then called Suman Bhai (Habibul Bashar). He told me that they were trying to reach me over phone for hours but found it switched off.
‘So they conveyed the message through my friend. He told me to join the camp immediately,’ said Mosharraf, who was not a part of the 30-man preliminary squad.
The left-arm spinner’s fortune began to change after he was called to attend a week-long training
camp organised by Bangladesh Cricket Board for spinners under former Indian spinner Venkatapathy Raju.
Raju looked to be highly impressed with Mosharraf’s bowling and it
was to such an extent that he put up his name to national head coach Chandika Hathurusinghe for providing him with an opportunity to show case his talent.
The Tigers were desperately looking for a spinner to partner with Sakib al Hasan in the shorter formats as doubts are raised with currently banned Arafat Sunny, who never looked to be his former self since the ban.
Coach Hathurusinghe’s initial choice was Shorawardi Shuvo, who nevertheless could not impress him during the six-week long training camp.
Mosharraf grabbed the chance with both hands through putting up a remarkable performance with a five-wicket haul in a practice game that looked to be enough to get a reward.
‘It is something special,’ said an excited Mosharraf. ‘I had been waiting for it for long time but only managed it on this occasion.
Mosharraf, who will turn 35 in November, began his career promisingly before it took a nosedive in 2008 when he preferred to renegade Indian Cricket League with 13 other players.
With Abdur Razzak and Sakib at the pick, he was never recalled until his performance in recent domestic competition took the attention of selector.
Mosharraf, also a decent batsman, led Legends of Rupganj to third place in the last Dhaka Premier League, said he has learnt from his mistakes and was also thankful to Raju for giving him a new lease of life.
‘I think now my experience had put me in a better position,’ he said.
‘My time with him [Venkatpathy Raju] was very encouraging. He taught me a few things but more importantly raised my confidence through putting up some few good words,’ he said.
Mosharraf credited minor county tournaments en England, where he was a regular participant, for helping him improve his batting.
‘My batting has improved and all due to my time in the English county cricket. I bat quite up in the order there.’

-With New Age input

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