When the Test series begins in Chittagong from Sunday, a Ranji Trophy player might turn out for Bangladesh. One of the few foreigners to play in the Indian domestic league, left-arm spinner Enamul Haque Jr is likely to lead the Bangladesh spin attack. He turned out for Maharashtra four times, including matches against Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh during the 2008-09 season.
Haque was Man-of-the-Match in Bangladesh’s first Test win in January 2005 against Zimbabwe in which he took six wickets and followed it up with a match haul of 12 in the second. Thereafter, he lost form but came back strongly in 2006 when Bangladesh fared well against Australia.
“This will be one of my toughest series,” Haque, who hails from Sylhet in the north-eastern part of the country, said.
“India have the world’s best batting line-up and they play spin the best. It’s going to be very tough. The wicket in Chittagong is unlikely to turn before the fourth or fifth day but to hold on till then we need to bat very well,” the 23-year-old said.
“The biggest problem for Bangladesh is that we don’t have medium-pacers who can bowl at a stretch from either end so that a rough is created outside the right-hander’s leg-stump. Once that happens, a left-arm spinner can attack the batsmen. Else, it becomes very difficult,” Haque said.
Ranji Trophy was a learning experience for Haque, who came into the Bangladesh team in 2003-04 to play second fiddle to Mohammad Rafique. “When I came in, my role was to keep the runs down. Now, the responsibility is a lot more. Ranji was a great learning experience and it helped me come back into the team. The standard is a lot higher than what we have here and not all wickets are flat,” Haque said.
Djordjevic continues journey
Former Churchill Brothers coach Zoran Djordjevic, who led the club to their maiden I-League title, is now the football coach of Bangladesh. Soon after taking up the job, Djordjevic went to watch a few matches and grounds under the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF). The Mohammedan Sporting-Brothers Union match in Kamalapur was his first and he said a lot of work was required. “He is on a two-month trial,” said BFF president Kazi Salahuddin. “We have him for the upcoming South Asian Games and the AFC Challenge Cup. We have told him that we will see the results and then see whether we needed a longer contract with him,” he said.
Despite the club winning the I-League, Djordjevic’s contract was not renewed.