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View Full Version : The Selection of Muhammad Sharif and Overhauling the Selection Process


Sohel
May 25, 2007, 09:51 PM
Given the quality of our domestic cricket, only those performing in international matches for the BD U-19, U-23, and A sides against quality opposition from other test playing nations should be considered for the senior side if they meet predetermined performance standards. Since it may be better for their confidence levels to face weaker opposition initially, they should debut against the likes of Zimbabwe, Kenya and even Ireland before dealing with the big boys of world cricket.

Predetermined, well-defined, and duly contextualized performance measures also need to be balanced and adjusted according to individual ability and realistic expectations in light of the realities of our domestic cricket. For example, the bar for a Junaid Siddique or Dollar Mahmud needs to be set higher than say, a Nadif Chaudhury or Muhammad Shahzada. Talent and ability need to be specifically defined and measured with regards to 1) natural hand-eye coordination and other bio mechanical attributes; 2) temperament and other psychological attributes; and most importantly, 3) the ability to learn in terms of specific, realistic, achievable and time-phased batting, bowling and fielding performance measures. Needless to say, exceptions to the rule can always be made for genuine talents like Mashrafee Bin Murtaza, Muhammad Ashraful Matin, Tamim Iqbal Khan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Alok Kapali, and Nafis Iqbal Khan as they have been in the past, but with a degree of sobriety we haven't seen so far from our selectors. We don't want to witness talented young teens like Talha Jubair suffer major setbacks before having the chance to shine anymore.

Players selected through the tougher, better, more reasonable new process should be given a predetermined number of chances to acclimate themselves at the senior level - say, up to 15 ODIs with 3 consecutive appearances and up to 5 test matches with 2 consecutive appearances - tied into a set of predetermined performance measures for each time they take to the field. We should be wise enough to remember that it's not all about the number of matches the individual players play for the senior side, or we have played over the past 7-odd years as a test playing nation for that matter, and must also take into consideration: 1) the sub par quality of our evolving cricket infrastructure; 2) the typically counterproductive and stagnating challenges faced by that infrastructure; and most importantly, 3) the negative impact all of that is bound to have upon our nascent cricket culture. Before measuring the success and failure of its players, BCB must face up to its mission responsibilities, and objectively assess with absolute transparency whether or not it has done its very best to set them up for success.

The long awaited development of a better cricket infrastructure, culminating in well-compensated, well-marketed, and well-merchandized professional teams, each with 1) a nationwide, extensive network of trained talent scouts; 2) state of the art training facilities managed by qualified Australian coaches mentoring locals with the aptitude for coaching; and most importantly, 3) several age-based junior sides will enhance the quality of our domestic cricket and strengthen the overall selection process. BCB has the money and other resources to set up six such professional teams, one in each divisional capital and start the processes without further ado. Cricket has indeed become our only true national pastime. As the less affluent, small town and rural background of our best young cricketers clearly demonstrate, it is no longer the game of the urban, English-medium elite. The professional league must not be dhaka-based anymore if we choose to do right by the tens of millions all over Bangladesh playing cricket and dreaming to become the next Mashrafee, Ashraful, Shakib and Mushfiq hailing respectively from Narail, the Bashabo area in Dhaka, Magura and Bogura.

The unrivaled popular passion for cricket will guarantee the easy availability of corporate sponsors to cover any financial shortfall. Also a separate cable TV channel, dedicating itself to the sustainable development of cricket in Bangladesh should be set up by BCB and its strategic allies to broadcast all games, and cricket-education programs from all over the cricket world.

It is a fact that Muhammad Sharif performed well in domestic cricket. The comparatively poor quality of our domestic cricket - compared to those of our South Asian neighbors in Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka – is also a fact. Ugly to see the young man finish his international career with the less than mediocre performance in the ongoing test match against India - and we’re more than likely to have four more agonizing days to look forward to, save the possible consolation of a great individual performance or two - but then again, it's not the first time a questionable selection has ended the international career of yet another young Bangladeshi cricketer. I don't think better bowlers like Dollar Mahmud, Tapash Baisya or even the tamer Talha Jubair would have, could have faired any worse than the 5'5" rehabilitating seamer. (edited out the malicious parts from the original post, thanks miraz bhai, i WAS scapegoating him) Sadly for Sharif, realities of the pitch were as unforgiving to him as they have been to the likes of Alamgir Kabir and Mushfiq Babu from our not too distant past. Faruque Ahmed and Athar Ali Khan have never taken responsibility for their incompetence as selectors, there's no reason to expect that they will before their too long a reign as national selectors come to an end. Not unfamiliar to the morbid realities of public discontent, they still don’t get it and need to be fired ASAP if we want the best possible team for the upcoming Sri Lanka tour. We have come expect more from our cricketers, as we should, and BCB must stop assuming liabilities our cricket can ill afford at this juncture.

cricketboy
May 25, 2007, 11:00 PM
Sharif may be even less speedy than Sujon. What a gift to the Indian batsman. Enamul(jr) should have been a much better option.

Miraz
May 26, 2007, 12:12 AM
I don't think selectors made any blunder by picking ahead of rookie bowlers like Dollar Mahmud or Mohammad Shahzada or anyone else.

It is not true that only domestic performances prompted his selection, Sharif has a decent (14 wickets in 8 matches) test record (considering Bangladesh standard) and it's not the dip in performance, injury denied him a longer stint with Bangladesh team.

He has now recovered from injury and performing with both and ball in the domestic circuit, selectors picked him for tourneys prior to the world cup but another freakish injury prevented him to play in those matches against relatively easy oppositions.

Now, whenever selectors decided to add a third seamer for the team, we had no automatic choice except Sharif, who played Test, had a decent record, got injured and now after recovery is performing. Sharif also had good performances with the A teams. Picking a rookie ahead of Sharif and a similar performance (with Mashrafe remaining wicketless, I really doubt any other bowler would have made any difference at all) would have been a more serious selection blunder. That would also killed a prospect well ahead of time.

Now, our domestic cricket is not world class, true. We need to overhaul this, a good system is in place but to make it more effective we have to make the wickets more sporting. I don't agree with you at all that our evolving cricket infra structure is sub par quality. In fact, in many cases its better than our neighbors, need some fine tuning and I am sure that will be done in due time.

We don't have scouts but our national academy is providing facilities under Australian coaches supported by ex-national players. We have 4 different age group teams. Now, throwing the age group teams into the national league level will definitely lower the standard of the league. We can only think about national U-19 team. BCB has made a very similar stem by allowing BKSP to participate in the 2nd division league in which they become champion and got promotion in 1st division league. This year they earned promotion in the premier league by emerging as champion in the 1st division league. BCB is working with purpose and a proper system is evolving.

To me, it's a good writing but lacks the detailed information about our cricket administrators steps and initiatives.

And I have to differ in few other places, but I will leave it to others to comment before taking the keyboard again. :)

Oh, one last point, as I am watching live, Sharif is bowling between 115-134 KMPH.

Murad
May 26, 2007, 01:17 AM
i think sharif bowled welll today.. he was struggling in the beginning of the innings.. but now hes doing ok... lets see what happens...

amra_korbo_joy
May 26, 2007, 02:01 AM
I think Sharif has bowled not upto the test standard. He should not be selected. I agree with Sohel. Farooq should be fired.

cricket_pagol
May 26, 2007, 02:41 AM
I don't think selectors made any blunder by picking ahead of rookie bowlers like Dollar Mahmud or Mohammad Shahzada or anyone else.

It is not true that only domestic performances prompted his selection, Sharif has a decent (14 wickets in 8 matches) test record (considering Bangladesh standard) and it's not the dip in performance, injury denied him a longer stint with Bangladesh team.

He has now recovered from injury and performing with both and ball in the domestic circuit, selectors picked him for tourneys prior to the world cup but another freakish injury prevented him to play in those matches against relatively easy oppositions.

Now, whenever selectors decided to add a third seamer for the team, we had no automatic choice except Sharif, who played Test, had a decent record, got injured and now after recovery is performing. Sharif also had good performances with the A teams. Picking a rookie ahead of Sharif and a similar performance (with Mashrafe remaining wicketless, I really doubt any other bowler would have made any difference at all) would have been a more serious selection blunder. That would also killed a prospect well ahead of time.

Now, our domestic cricket is not world class, true. We need to overhaul this, a good system is in place but to make it more effective we have to make the wickets more sporting. I don't agree with you at all that our evolving cricket infra structure is sub par quality. In fact, in many cases its better than our neighbors, need some fine tuning and I am sure that will be done in due time.

We don't have scouts but our national academy is providing facilities under Australian coaches supported by ex-national players. We have 4 different age group teams. Now, throwing the age group teams into the national league level will definitely lower the standard of the league. We can only think about national U-19 team. BCB has made a very similar stem by allowing BKSP to participate in the 2nd division league in which they become champion and got promotion in 1st division league. This year they earned promotion in the premier league by emerging as champion in the 1st division league. BCB is working with purpose and a proper system is evolving.

To me, it's a good writing but lacks the detailed information about our cricket administrators steps and initiatives.

And I have to differ in few other places, but I will leave it to others to comment before taking the keyboard again. :)

Oh, one last point, as I am watching live, Sharif is bowling between 115-134 KMPH.

I agree with Miraz bhai... after Mashrafee, shahadat, rasel and Taposh, there is no clear favorite

zahid
May 26, 2007, 04:08 AM
Agree with Miraz bhai.

We don't play any other pacers other than Rajib, Mashrafe or Rasel or Tapash.

If you don't give the others a chance, they'll never gain experience. Therefore, you then wouldn't have any realistic backup bowlers.

Sohel
May 26, 2007, 05:41 PM
hmm... maybe i DID get carried away about sharif.

any feedback about the selection process, professional team structure?

Aritro
May 27, 2007, 07:42 AM
The long awaited development of a better cricket infrastructure, culminating in well-compensated, well-marketed, and well-merchandized professional teams, each with 1) a nationwide, extensive network of trained talent scouts; 2) state of the art training facilities managed by qualified Australian coaches mentoring locals with the aptitude for coaching; and most importantly, 3) several age-based junior sides will enhance the quality of our domestic cricket and strengthen the overall selection process. BCB has the money and other resources to set up six such professional teams, one in each divisional capital and start the processes without further ado. Cricket has indeed become our only true national pastime. As the small town and rural background of our best young cricketers clearly demonstrate, it is no longer the game of the urban, English-medium elite. The professional league must not be dhaka-based anymore if we choose to do right by the tens of millions all over Bangladesh playing cricket and dreaming to become the next Mashrafee, Ashraful, Shakib and Mushfiq hailing respectively from Narail, Narayanganj, Magura and Bogura.



Beautifully written post but perhaps a bit too scathing of a system that's been winning plaudits for being the best in Asia.
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However, I certainly agree with your points about setting up a pro-league and your critique of the Dhaka-centricism that's still such a huge factor in our cricket. In Bangladesh, we have a huge advantage over the other Asian countries in that we only have 6 teams in our domestic league. This not only ensures a high concentration of quality (unlike the Indians, who have their spread thinly over far too many teams), it also makes the eventual realisation of a fully professional far more feasible.

While I know there's huge TV rights and sponsorship funds available to the BCB, I'm not sure if it's enough to set-up a fully professional league yet. But unless I'm mistaken, the national selectors are responsible for selecting all 6 first class teams and this is symptomatic of the over-centralisation that's holding back parts of our cricket.

Each district should have an administrative body not only to oversee selection, but also to manage the distribution of funds, organise and run a local club competition, train talent scouts and oversee junior coaching in their area. Setting up well-coached under-age teams with overseas experts at the helm to feed each of the 6 regional first class teams should be a priority.

Of course the main trouble is that people still only show up to club matches, and that needs to be overcome.

I suspect a lot of those things will be done in time though.

IanW
May 28, 2007, 08:45 AM
Zahid,

And that is why you need real tours with tour matches.

Forget this one day crap. Where was the four-day warmup game, allowing fringe players to get experience and exposure ?


Ian Whitchurch

Sohel
May 28, 2007, 11:46 AM
Beautifully written post but perhaps a bit too scathing of a system that's been winning plaudits for being the best in Asia.
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However, I certainly agree with your points about setting up a pro-league and your critique of the Dhaka-centricism that's still such a huge factor in our cricket. In Bangladesh, we have a huge advantage over the other Asian countries in that we only have 6 teams in our domestic league. This not only ensures a high concentration of quality (unlike the Indians, who have their spread thinly over far too many teams), it also makes the eventual realisation of a fully professional far more feasible.

While I know there's huge TV rights and sponsorship funds available to the BCB, I'm not sure if it's enough to set-up a fully professional league yet. But unless I'm mistaken, the national selectors are responsible for selecting all 6 first class teams and this is symptomatic of the over-centralisation that's holding back parts of our cricket.

Each district should have an administrative body not only to oversee selection, but also to manage the distribution of funds, organise and run a local club competition, train talent scouts and oversee junior coaching in their area. Setting up well-coached under-age teams with overseas experts at the helm to feed each of the 6 regional first class teams should be a priority.

Of course the main trouble is that people still only show up to club matches, and that needs to be overcome.

I suspect a lot of those things will be done in time though.


thanks bro for covering the financial angle. i've tweaked some of the ideas here, thanks to miraz bhai, and submitted an essay to Zunaid bhai. the IPO idea covers those finacial angles and more. athe BB has tough guidelines for IPO qualification... hope you'll get to read it here soon. i'll blog it in a couple of days also. :)

Murad
May 28, 2007, 01:18 PM
Sharif is a better bowler than Tapash... and also better than Farhad Reza..

Sharif needs more time. He needs more chances.. he was a good bowler before getting injurned in 2002.

Sohel
May 28, 2007, 01:54 PM
Sharif is a better bowler than Tapash... and also better than Farhad Reza..

Sharif needs more time. He needs more chances.. he was a good bowler before getting injurned in 2002.

sharif has better line and length at the moment. but tapash has more pace, aggression and better balance. he's good with the bat too. surely you remember the NZL match? forhad's shouldn't bowl. don't forget talha jubair, dollar mahamud and ziaur rahman bro. peace, dig the avartar... :)

Sohel
May 29, 2007, 08:31 PM
c'mon guys, let's hear some ideas about those performance standards.

Aritro
May 30, 2007, 04:12 AM
Hehe, seriously folks that post must have taken bloody ages to type.

Give the guy some feedback.

Sohel
May 30, 2007, 04:17 AM
Hehe, seriously folks that post must have taken bloody ages to type.

Give the guy some feedback.

thanks bro... :)