Uncapped Mosaddek Hossain picked for Afghanistan ODIs
Bangladesh have picked the uncapped Mosaddek Hossain in the 13-man squad for the first two ODIs against Afghanistan to be played on September 25 and 28. However, there was no place for Al-Amin Hossain, with Shafiul Islam making a comeback in the side.
Mosaddek had played a solitary T20I earlier this year against Zimbabwe but he has been long considered as a potential international player due to his strong domestic performances; his first two first-class hundreds were both double-hundreds. He has also been consistent in the Dhaka Premier League, especially in the 2016 edition in which he made 622 runs in 14 matches at an average of 77.75 for champions Abahani Limited.
"Mosaddek has done very well in domestic cricket, which includes the longer-version tournaments, in the last two years. He did well in the Dhaka Premier League and we feel he is ready," chief selector Minhajul Abedin said.
Shafiul last played an ODI in November 2014 while Al-Amin has played only three ODIs since 2015. Al-Amin took 25 wickets in the DPL at an average of 23, while Shafiul took 11 wickets from 10 matches at 37.27.
Rubel Hossain and left-arm spinner Taijul Islam returned to the side after missing the ODI series against Zimbabwe last November. Mustafizur Rahman (injured), Liton Das, and Kamrul Islam Rabbi, however, missed out from the squad.
Minhajul said that there were a few "negatives" doing the rounds about Al-Amin but did not elaborate. He only said that Shafiul's fitness was better than Al-Amin's.
"Al-Amin has not been altogether removed from the teams. We have the England series coming up too, and he is in our pool," Minhajul said. "There were a few native things that have come up about Al-Amin, plus there's some talk about his fitness.
"There was nothing about whether the coach likes or dislikes Al-Amin. There's a vast difference between Al-Amin and Shafiul's fielding ability too. Shafiul improved his fitness during the camp. He is an experienced bowler."
He also said that they would be adding Taskin Ahmed to the squad if the ICC clears him from his banned bowling action. Taskin, along with Arafat Sunny, gave his bowling action reassessment test on September 8 in Brisbane.
"We haven't heard from the ICC regarding Taskin's test result. It was supposed to be given today," Minhajul said. "If he is given the go-ahead, he will be an addition to the squad. If it is the other way around, we will discuss what to do with the team management and maybe add another pace bowler."
Squad for first two ODIs: Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Mosaddek Hossain, Shakib Al Hasan (vice-capt.), Mahmudullah, Nasir Hossain, Mushfiqur Rahim, Sabbir Rahman, Taijul Islam, Mashrafe Mortaza (capt.), Shafiul Islam, Rubel Hossain
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84