Sports, Cricket

Afif sidelined for poor performance

Published : 26 Mar 2023 09:28 PM

Afif Hossain played for Bangladesh a record 61 consecutive matches before losing his spot in the lineup due to a poor batting display. As a result, the southpaw missed the ODI and T20I series against Ireland at home.

The out-of-form all-rounder will now need to prove his worth to the team, according to Bangladesh head coach ChandikaHathurusingha.

“Obviously, it [reason to drop Afif] is not because of his face but, of course, performance,” Hathurusingha told the media ahead of the first T20I against Ireland on Sunday.

“Anyone who gets dropped is because of the performance, but at times we drop some players for tactical reasons if we want to do anything different or want to have a look at the player,” he added.

Afif played in his first T20I match against Sri Lanka in 2018, but he failed to score a run. The young player then played his second T20I against Zimbabwe in 2019 after a lengthy break, scoring 52 runs off just 26 deliveries.

He played 61 consecutive matches for the Tigers after that until the third T20I against England. The 23-year-old had a strike rate of 120.28 and an average of 21.25 while scoring 1020 runs in 62 T20 Internationals.

Hathurusingha informed he had spoken to Afif personally and told the youngster that he will have to perform according to team’s demand. 

“He [Afif] is out of the team now and he will have to do what he requires at the moment: which is to score runs.

“I have spoken with him regarding some of the areas of improvements and if he is able to do so and if there is a vacant place in the team, he will get the opportunity like others,” Hathurusingha said.