Jubair can be the mystery man

Jubair Hossain

In a write up at the Daily Kalerkantho, former national captain Rakibul Hasan has given his thoughts about the Bangladesh squad for the world cup. Here is his opinion about the squad: [Read in Bangla: বিশ্বকাপে বাংলাদেশের রহস্য বালক]

Previously the tag “Wonder boy” has been added to many young cricketers. I want to tag one player in my World Cup squad as the wonder boy; he is Jubair Hossain,as he has shown his bowling skills in the Zimbabwe series. He isn’t well known by most batsmen around the world, and that might make him the “mystery boy”.

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While leg spinners are often expensive, they have the ability to pick up wickets. Jubair would be benefited by  the pace and bounce in Australian pitches which suits leg spinners. In limited overs cricket, you need wickets to put the opposition under pressure and bundle them out for manageable scores. Teams outside the subcontinent haven’t played too many quality leg spinners. I am hopeful with Jubair after I saw him bowl against Zimbabwe. If the captain supports him well, he can be the “Magic Boy” for Bangladesh. It might seem that I am giving him too many adjectives for his age; I will just wait for him to prove me right.

Another player who really impressed me is Taijul Islam. What is noticeable about him is his ability to loop and flight the ball to tempt the batsman. His performance against Zimbabwe, particularly the hat-trick on debut would certainly make him confident. Another aspect of Taijul is his physique. His height would help him gain extra bounce in Australian pitches, and his flight makes him a different type of left arm spinner than Shakib al Hasan, whose main weapon is the arm ball. As a result, there would be more variety in our bowling.

Though he was under consideration, I could not keep Arafat Sunny in my team. This is because he is relatively short and he would not get the benefit of low bounce in Australia that he gets here. As a result I would go with two spinners, Taijul and Jubair. Now coming to the pace bowling department, I think Rubel Hossain is one of our best pacers. But due to the recent personal incidents it would be better not to pick him, as discipline comes first. Abul Hasan could be a good alternative, as I saw him bowl with pace in domestic cricket, and he is quite handy with the bat as well.

Young Taskin Ahmed had to be picked, as he bowls with pace and has an aggressive attitude. He clocks 140+ kph regularly, and that will make him uncomfortable to face for the batsmen in Australia-New Zealand. Shafiul Islam, I believe will be fit in time for the World Cup. his experience, straight arm action and ability to swing the ball is quite handful. Captain Mashrafe has the art and skills of pace bowling despite lack of pace. He can swing the ball both ways and possesses an effective slower delivery to confound the batsman. Along with batting capablilty, his player management and bowling changes make him an asset for the team.

You might have noticed I mainly picked multi-skilled players here. As the back up opener for Tamim and Bijoy, I would pick Soumya Sarkar instead of Imrul Kayes or Shamsur Rahman. This is because he can bowl medium pace, and coupled with his batting prowess square of the wicket (square cut, hook, pull), he can be very useful in Australian conditions. In the lower order I would pick Sabbir Rahman. Not only can he hit big, he is also the best fielder in the team, someone you would always want on a tour to Australia. As his backup I would pick the experienced Nasir Hossain. He has been amongst the runs in domestic cricket.

Rakibul Hasan’s squad: Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque, Soumya Sarkar, Shakib al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Nasir Hossain, Sabbir Rahman, Mashrafe Mortaza, Shafiul Islam, Abul Hasan, Taskin Ahmed, Jubair Hossain, Taijul Islam, Mominul Haque.

First match XI; Tamim, Anamul, Mominul, Mahmudullah, Shakib, Mushfiq, Sabbir, Mashrafe, Shafiul, Abul and Jubair.


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