Mushfiqur Rahim has been passed fit by the BCB’s chief physician Dr Debashis Roy, following a hamstring injury. He will be available for the domestic Bangladesh Cricket League match that begins on February 7, as he had opted out of touring Pakistan.
Roy also said that Imrul Kayes has recovered from his calf injury. Both Kayes and Rahim undertook fitness tests on Tuesday.
“Mushfiqur Rahim and Imrul have been struggling with hamstring and calf muscle. They were undergoing rehab programmes,” Roy said. “Mushfiqur had a grade-one injury, so we had hoped that he would recover by the second week of February. We had anticipated that Imrul would be needing one more week. Today they both passed the tests conducted by our physio and trainer. They are both fit to play.”
Rahim’s recovery means that he is also available for the one-off Test against Zimbabwe in late February. If he is to play that match, Bangladesh will have to make room for him in the squad that was announced earlier in the week for the Rawalpindi Test, which begins on February 7. Head coach Russell Domingo had indicated earlier that whoever takes Rahim’s place may have to make room for the more experienced campaigner when he’s back.
“I am under the impression that this is the squad for this one Test match [against Pakistan]. We will re-evaluate once we get back [from Pakistan],” Domingo had said. “You have to remember that Mushfiq got runs in the last Test, but we also need to consider the fact that it is hard to pick a batting line-up, change it for one Test, and then change it again for the third Test. I want to give guys a run, but we also need to consider that Mushfiq was our best player in India.”
There however remains some confusion over Rahim’s selection for the Zimbabwe Test, as chief selector Minhajul Abedin had reportedly said on Sunday, the day after the Rawalpindi Test squad was announced, that Rahim has to prove himself in domestic cricket to get picked.
“Mushfiq has an injury. He has to become fit, and then do well in domestic cricket to be considered,” he told the Samakal newspaper.
Meanwhile Shadman Islam, the left-hand opener, will probably need surgery on his wrist. He may be sent to Australia later this month for the same.
“We were struggling to manage the injuries of Shadman and Mrittunjoy [Chowdhury], who had returned from the Under-19 World Cup with a shoulder injury. The board has decided to send them both to Australia for better treatment,” Roy said. “We are hopeful to send both to hand and shoulder surgeons later this month.”