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Hathurusinghe says Soumya is very important for the Bangladesh team

by Afonso
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Shakib Al Hasan suffered a finger injury at the end of the World Cup. Because of that, the Bangladeshi all-rounder was not seen in the Test series against New Zealand. Bangladesh are now in New Zealand to play a three-match ODI and T20 series. Shakib is not there either. Coach Chandika Hathurusinghe has returned Soumya Sarkar to the team instead of the captain.

But Soumya could not stage a comeback, he returned to the pavilion before opening the run book. Soumya did not get any wicket with 63 runs in 6 overs, caught two. Bangladesh also lost by 44 runs in the first ODI due to rain.
Bangladesh will face the Kiwis in the second ODI in Nelson on Wednesday in order to level the series. Before this match, coach Hathurusinghe said that the lack of Shakib in the XI will not be filled by Soumya.

However, before the New Zealand tour, captain Nazmul Hossain calmly said that Soumya will play a big role in filling Shakib’s void. Then the coach also joined the captain. Hathurusinghe then said, with what he (Soumya) has done for the party over the years, it is to be expected. Today said, ‘Shakib is a regular face in the Bangladesh team for the last 15 years. (Without Shakib) it is difficult to find the team combination. That’s why as an all-rounder he (Soumya) is very important in our XI.’

However, the coach has turned 180 degrees from his previous thoughts about filling the void of Shakib. Talking to reporters at the Nelson Ground, Hathurusinghe said, ‘What Shakib has done, he (Soumya) cannot do. But we expect, he will play a role with the ball and bat like an all-rounder.

The coach says that Soumya gets regular runs at the domestic level. Hathurusingha does not know the answer to the question why Soumya is not smiling when he comes to the national team. Even then, the Bangladeshi coach wants to bet on the left-handed all-rounder, ‘I saw him for the first time in this (first ODI) match. I don’t know where his problem is. He is getting runs in domestic tournaments. We need someone who can bowl, bat as well. Because Shakib is not here.’

Soumya failed to open the account of runs three times in the last five ODIs. He scored 32 runs in one of the remaining two matches, only 1 in the other.

Hathurusinghe is also thinking about young leg spinner Rishad Hossain. Before the current series, Rishad scored 87 runs in a practice match against New Zealand XI. He also took 3 wickets with the ball. The coach of Bangladesh said that Rishad will soon be seen in the XI, ‘We wanted to play him (Rishad) in the last match as well. Considering our record here (in New Zealand), the decision to play him without winning a match is risky.’

Bangladesh has to play with an extra batsman as the wicket was given at the beginning of the match. However, Hathurusinghe said that Rishad will be seen in the XI in the near future, ‘We are losing a lot of wickets in the beginning. So we have to play with an extra batsman. But we are looking for a leg spinner. He (Rishad) can be the leg-spinner we want in the XI.’



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