Bangladesh have omitted wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim from the 14-member squad for the three-ODI series against South Africa. The selectors have named four uncapped players in the squad, including Rahim's replacement Dhiman Ghosh, middle-order batsmen Raqibul Hasan and Nazimuddin, and left-arm spinner Mosharraf Hossain.
Since his unbeaten match-winning half-century against India in the World Cup last year, Rahim has struggled with the bat, scoring just four runs in his last five one-dayers. That lean trot includes three consecutive ducks, prompting the selectors to give Ghosh an opportunity. Syed Rasel, the left-arm medium-pace bowler who had missed most of the Bangladesh's New Zealand tour due to a dislocated left collar bone, has also been recalled.
"Rahim is out of form so we decided to give him a break," said Rafiqul Alam, the chairman of selectors. "Dhiman is an aggressive batsman who is in good form. He has been playing for the A Team and Academy Team regularly and his wicketkeeping has also improved. We think he can be quite destructive as a batsman in the one-day form of the game."
Aftab Ahmed, the middle-order batsman, has also been ruled out after sustaining a head injury during the second Test in Chittagong. Aftab was forced to retire hurt after a miscued hook off Jacques Kallis struck him flush on the helmet. He was kept under observation and was unable to come out to bat in the second innings.
"It will take Ahmed another four to five days to recover from the injury," Alam said. "Nazimuddin's style of batting is similar to Ahmed. He is also an attacking batsman so we decided to give him a chance.
"We also considered Mahmudullah Riyad as an allrounder but Mosharraf Hossain got in through the sheer weight of his performance in the domestic, A Team and Academy matches."
The first ODI is on Sunday, while the next two will be played in Mirpur on March 12 and 14.
Squad: Mohammad Ashraful (capt), Mashrafe Mortaza, Tamim Iqbal, Junaid Siddique, Nazim Uddin, Shahriar Nafees, Shakib Al Hasan, Dhiman Ghosh (wk), Abdur Razzak, Shahadat Hossain, Mosharraf Hossain, Syed Rasel, Farhad Reza, Raqibul Hasan.