Ebadat Hossain and Mohammad Manik were complete strangers in domestic cricket even a year ago but with their wildest imagination coming true they will play against England today.
Visiting England side will play a practice one-day match at Fatullah against a BCB XI side where both these bowlers are accommodated.
Ebadat, a 22-year old air force man, discovered through a pacer hunt competition conducted by telecom operator Robi last year, and Manik, a 19-year old, played just one first-class match each.
Ebadat, was picked up for the high performance unit but Manik’s story is even more amazing as he got this opportunity by drawing attention of Courtney Walsh by bowling in the net practice.
The legendary West Indian fast bowler was impressed with the young bowler, who played a couple of games for Cricket Coaching School in Dhaka Premier League this year and picked up just a solitary wicket.
That created a surprise as the duo was preferred ahead of some of the fast bowlers performed well in domestic arena and few others of high performance unit, who had been waiting for their opportunities.
But Manik was determined to utilise the opportunity.
‘It’s a great opportunity for me,’ said the 19-year old bowler from Gopalganj. ‘It’s a great honour for me to be selected for the BCB XI,’ he added.
‘It will be great for me to play against a big team like England. If I can do well here perhaps I will get even bigger opportunity in future,’ said the confident 6 feet 1 inch fast bowler.
Manik, who will turn 20 in the 25th of this month, felt that he was improving fast with Walsh and he reckoned with the tips of the great man he would accentuate further.
‘I worked four days with Courtney Walsh. He worked with three to four things with me. The strength of my bowling is out swing.
‘Walsh told me that I have some trivial problem with my run-up. He asked me to utilise my height. I am improving fast. Perhaps that is the reason he has seen something good in me.’
Manik also took inspiration from Bangladesh skipper Mashrafee bin Murtaza.
‘I went to Khulna during the Twenty20 series against Zimbabwe for net bowling. During that time I had the opportunity to talk with Mashrafee vai.
‘He discussed with me for just five minutes but I thought that five minute was worth practicing a year. His words are planted in my mind firmly. He is the greatest inspiration for us.’
Meanwhile Ebdat Hossain also felt confident of doing well today and like Manik he believed a good performance here would open the door for him for greater opportunities.
‘I will try my best tomorrow [today] to catch attention of all,’ said Ebadur.
‘I will try to put the ball in the right spot. All the English batsmen are very good, I must do very well to fight against them.’
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