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News

Donald impressed by 'Sylhet Rocket' Ebadot's explosive start to ODI career

"He has blown the house down," says Bangladesh's fast bowling coach, while praising his bowling group for their showing these past 12 months

Mohammad Isam
Mohammad Isam
22-Mar-2023
Ebadot Hossain has picked up 17 wickets in his first seven ODIs  •  AFP/Getty Images

Ebadot Hossain has picked up 17 wickets in his first seven ODIs  •  AFP/Getty Images

Allan Donald, the Bangladesh fast bowling coach, has said that Ebadot Hossain's extra pace is making the difference in the team's bowling line-up. Ebadot's career-best figures in the first ODI against Ireland helped Bangladesh win by a record margin of 183 runs.
The second game was a washout, which means Ebadot now has 17 wickets in his first seven ODIs. That is one wicket behind Mustafizur Rahman at the same stage of his career, in 2015.
"He has blown the house down," Donald said of Ebadot's explosive start in ODIs. "From the moment I met him in Johannesburg exactly 12 months ago, he has been impressive. He is an athlete. He has a great engine on him. The 'Syhet Rocket'.
"We are working on small things which are more tactical. We are working on game intelligence in every game. I am still trying to find the area that he needs to work on."
What stands out for Ebadot is the stark difference in the way his Test and ODI careers got going. He had picked up seven wickets after his seventh Test, averaging 90.71 and with a strike rate of 139.70.
But the turning point was his 6 for 46 against New Zealand in Bangladesh's famous win in the Mount Maunganui Test in January 2022. His wicket counter went up and his bowling average and strike rate improved significantly. Ebadot became a much-improved bowler, making his ODI and T20I debut later in the year.
"What has impressed me the most is that Ebadot is always in the game," Donald said. "He will be in the wickets column in every single game. He bowls 145-148 [kph], so you know the pace factor will have a massive impact on the game. He showed it the other night [first ODI].
"He is a wonderful talent; from a guy who won a fast-bowling competition to where he is now, he could consistently be a member of all three formats."
Donald praised the entire bowling group for their performances in the last 12 months, which has included two four-fors by Ebadot and one each from Shoriful Islam and Mustafizur. Taskin Ahmed's 5 for 35 against South Africa last year gave Bangladesh a historic series win over the hosts.
"It has been a terrific performance collectively. We have been speaking about this pack mentality for a while," Donald exclaimed.
"I just think great plaudits should go to the mindset of the group. It was wonderful to see how we bowled the other night [first ODI]. All three of them were very potent. All had an impact, asking questions and creating chances. Very happy to see that."
"Hathu [Hathurusingha] has been brilliant around the group. He has expressed his freedom to the group. I think they have unshackled themselves and played aggressive cricket."
Allan Donald
Donald also welcomed the addition of head coach Chandika Hathurusingha to the team for the second time. The former South Africa fast bowler said that his style matches with that of Hathurusingha's and that is helping in the players' development.
"I have been here for 12 months. My work with that group and the stuff that I have done with them has never changed. Hathu [Hathurusingha] is an attacking, aggressive coach. It is my style as well. What he has told the whole group as well is to take the game on, not be afraid to win. I think it is a great message," Donald said.
"Hathu has been brilliant around the group. He has expressed his freedom to the group. I think they have unshackled themselves and played aggressive cricket. My mindset has never changed since I was 16-17. It is to be aggressive but someone has to give me an expansive role. It is exactly what I have done to the bowling group."
Bangladesh's aggressive intent has come to the fore in the ongoing series against Ireland where they have put up scores of 338 and 349 in the first two ODIs. Mushfiqur Rahim scored Bangladesh's fastest century in the the format in the second ODI, while Shakib Al Hasan and Towhid Hridoy got quickfire nineties in the first game. Najmul Hossain Shanto and Litton Das also scored fifties in the second ODI.
Donald added that Bangladesh are now looking to breach the elusive 400-plus mark in the third ODI, given their batting form and stocks.
"It is definitely achievable. A couple of guys got nineties in the first game, couple of guys got seventies in the second game. Mushy [Mushfiqur] obviously converted it into a magnificent knock. We want to take those partnerships deeper, we want the hurt to feel even more. Take Ireland to the last ten overs with six or seven wickets in hand, so we can pile it on."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84