Why Tushar Imran Omitted From Bangladesh Test Squad?

Prolific veteran batsman Tushar Imran omitted again as BCB announced 15 member Bangladesh squad for playing two Tests against visiting Zimbabwe.


The squad includes four uncapped players – Mohammad Mithun, Nazmul Hossain, Ariful Haque and Khaled Mahmood. Tushar Imran has been scoring consistently in domestic cricket was expected to be included in the Test team especially in the absence of injured Tamim Iqbal and Shakib Ul Hasan.

Selectors have omitted him in the excuse of searching for a younger player though Tushar still have two to three years of active cricket left in him. Experts were surprised and shocked at BCB selection committee’s decision for omitting Tushar.

Also Read - Bangladesh cricket and selection fiasco

Bangladesh did not win many Tests. Many thought playing him against Zimbabwe could be the most appropriate decision. His inclusion could have given solidity to Bangladesh batting.

Tushar Imran continued his prolific form in all formats of domestic cricket scoring hundreds and fifties at will. Imran who debuted in 2002, averages 44 across 163 first-class matches. He is the only Bangladeshi player scoring over 10,000 runs in first class cricket.

This type of solid batsman is missing in the middle order and late middle order despite having Mominul, Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah. Age can not be a factor and definitely fitness is not an issue for Tushar. An unfit player cannot score so consistently in any form of cricket.

The Squad:
Mahmudullah (capt), Imrul Kayes, Litton Das, Mominul Haque, Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Mushfiqur Rahim, Ariful Haque, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Abu Jayed, Shafiul Islam, Mustafizur Rahman, Mohammad Mithun, Khaled Ahmed, Nazmul Islam

The squad has two openers in Litton and Kayes. There cannot be any confusion about their selection based on their current forms. Perhaps the team lacks a third opener which could be Soumya as he has been called to join the ODI squad and very unlikely be playing today.

There should be a back up opener in any case to replace in case of last minute injury. Mominul, Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah are automatic choice at 3, 4 & 5. Tushar could very well fit in at number 6 where possibly selectors are thinking about Mithun or Shanto.

Tushar is a far better batsman than both and far more experienced. Then comes number 7 where Mohammad Saifuddin is proving to be far better than any one at the moment for his all round performance.

Even Soumya could be a better bet for the position. Taijul and Mehedi Miraz would be slotted in for 8 and 9. I am not sure who would be ideal pace partner for Mustafiz. Perhaps one of the three Shafiul, Abu Jayed and Khaled. The first Test will be played in Sylhet.

If the wicket favors spin, Bangladesh would appear with two pacers and two spinners. Mehedi Miraz and Taijul are automatic choice. Nazmul Apu will have to sit out. In this squad Ariful, Shanto, Nazmul Apu and one of the pacers would be wasted. There were ample scopes for inclusion of Tushar Imran.

Domestic cricket is the only platform in which fringe players can use for getting selection in the national team. Tushar is performing admirably well there for the past several years. If such prolific performance cannot be recognized by the selectors what else a player can do for consideration in the national team?

We believe omitting Tushar is not a mere mistake, it is a crime now. Hope BCB selectors would change their mind and include Tushar Imran in the Test squad. Otherwise justice would not be done to his consistent prolific batting.

Saleque Sufi

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