SHAKIB AT NO. 3?
Shakib has been in great form in the ongoing ODI series against Windies © Getty
Batting at 3 in ODIs for Bangladesh has become a sort of poisoned chalice as none of the tried and tested trio – Sabbir Rahman, Imrul Kayes and Liton Das – who have batted there recently, succeeded in nailing the spot down.
But Shakib Al Hasan has put his hand up with two fantastic performances in the ongoing ODI series against the Windies. A 97 at Guyana in the first game saw the Tigers register a win and the all-rounder followed that up with 56 in the second match. Shakib, who also batted at three in the tri-nation tournament at home involving Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe, was provided with another opportunity against West Indies and it is beginning to look like that he might be the man the team management are looking at as a long term option for the crucial spot.
Minhajul Abedin, the Chief Selector told Cricbuzz that Shakib’s showing against West Indies bodes well for the future. ”When you bat at a certain position you tend to make some sort of mental adjustment with your own self and certainly he looked to have made those so far in the opening two games.”
”Certainly we are yet to fix a certain player at number three but it looks Sakib is getting into a zone at some point of his batting that indicates he is enjoying the position,” he said.
“We have the number one all-rounder in our side and he is experienced enough to bat in any position but he looks comfortable at number 3,” he said
”If the player is confident in playing in a specific position then I think he should continue to do that,” he added.
Shakib missed a well deserved century by three runs on his way to laying the platform to win the series opener with a mammoth second wicket stand of 207 runs alongside Tamim Iqbal. While in the second game though they lost the match, his half-century can be regarded as a big boost for the others who followed suit. Shakib has batted at 5 for most of his career, but is now interested to make the most of the fielding restrictions in place by coming in at 3.
But he was denied that chance by Bangladesh’s immediate-past head coach Chandika Hathurusingha, who wanted him to come lower down so that Bangladesh could benefit from having such a senior man during the crunch overs.
Shakib has scored four half centuries at number three in the eight innings that he played so far with a highest of 97 runs, averaging 43.12 with four fifties, while his overall batting average is 35.50.