Mashrafe returns to training

Former Bangladesh national team ODI skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza has finally returned to training after recovering from a hamstring injury. The 37-year-old, who is recovering from a hamstring injury, spent some time running before he bowled a few overs at the BCB Academy Ground. 

As a result, arguably the most successful Bangladesh ODI Skipper has practiced in Mirpur after eight long months.

Before coming to Mirpur on Tuesday, Mashrafe spent time in a light fitness session. After that he bowled in the academy field. He bowled 4 overs slowly in full run-up.

Mashrafe stepped down from the ODI captaincy after the series against Zimbabwe last March. Although other cricketers returned to practice after the corona stagnation period, Mashrafe did not return. He was infected with Covid and on top of that he was injured as well. He was injured right before the Bangabandhu Cup T20. It was his old hamstring injury again.

As a result, Mashrafe’s name was not included in the players’ draft due to his injury and lack of fitness. However, the selectors said that Mashrafe can play directly in any team if he is fit. He took separate permission to practice in Mirpur as there is a bio-protected zone. Mashrafe was seen running in the middle of the wicket for an hour. 

BCB trainer Tushar Kanti Hawlader, the trainer who oversaw Mashrafe’s practice session, told the media that they had mainly worked to restore his match fitness, “He is practicing on his own after corona and now he wants to reduce his weight so I am trying to help him,” Tushar said. “It is too early to say whether he is match fit or not but the way he is practicing it will not take time for him to get back his fitness. If he wants to play he will play because if he feels he can manage these four overs with this fitness he can play.”

Tushar said that Mashrafe has lost 10 kg and reached 84 kg in a few days. Tushar added it was up to Mashrafe to be match fit, “He is different, he is Mashrafe, and he can do anything I believe. If he wants to play, he will play. It’s a matter of bowling 4 overs.”

However, there is no definite schedule in front of Mashrafe to play a game. The West Indies are scheduled to tour Bangladesh in January. However, it is not yet final whether there will be an ODI against the team. Mashrafe, who resigned as ODI captain, will also have to fight for his place. Besides, the BCB has no clear idea whether the Dhaka Premier League, which was unfinished due to corona, will be re-launched.

He still has a chance to play in the ongoing Bangabandhu T20 Cup. Any team can take him in replacement of an injured player. Mominul Haque of Gazi Group Chattogram has been injured. However, as the fast bowlers of the team are currently on fire in the tourney, the chances of including Mashrafe instead of a batsman are slim.

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