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oracle
October 6, 2003, 01:50 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/cricket/3100664.stm

This is i think the 3rd time I have seen an article in UK on Rafiq. Independent also compared him favourably against their own Giles.

Rafique peaks for England

By Shahid A. Hashmi

In most countries, the only time you would see cricketers swimming is when they are taking a well-earned break in the hotel pool.

Rafique has successfully returned from allegations of chucking
But Mohammad Rafique began his cricketing career swimming to the training ground.

The slow left-armer lived in the Dhaka suburb of Keraniganj, a boat-ride across the River Buriganga from the Bangabandhu stadium.

When he was short of cash he swam instead, but Rafique did not let that get in the way of pursuing his dream.

"My father tried to stop me because we couldn't even afford a cricket ball but my love and desire to play for Bangladesh remained intact," he says.

And he has reaped the rewards: with 17 wickets in the series against Pakistan in early September the 33-year-old emerged as one of the men England must watch out for.

Rafique's whirlwind batting as an opener in domestic cricket earned him the tag "Bangladeshi Jayasuriya", after the former Sri Lanka skipper.

I want to play the same role as Murali plays for Sri Lanka

Mohammad Rafique
And as a right arm medium pacer he would have been a handy limited-overs player

But then came a twist in his career when Wasim Haider, a member of Pakistan's 1992 World Cup winning team, advised him to switch to left-arm spin.

"I owe my left-arm spin skills to Haider who played with me in the Dhaka league," says Rafique.

"With practice day in, day out I coached myself and ended up in the Bangladesh team.

"My role model is Muralitharan and I want to play the same role as Murali plays for Sri Lanka."

"Getting Brian Lara out is my dream."

When Bangladesh played their inaugural Test in 2000, Rafique and captain Naiumur Rehman shared nine wickets between them.

But the Test ended on a bitter note as umpires David Shepherd and Steve Bucknor reported both their actions.

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
Tests:
Debut (3-117) v India, Dhaka 2000/01
6-77 v SA, Dhaka 2003
5-118 v Pakistan, Peshawar 2003
5-36 v Pakistan, Multan 2003

ODIs:
Debut (2 & 1-15) v India, Sharjah 1994/95
77 & 3-56 v Kenya, Hyderabad 1998
41no v NZ, Kimberley 2003 (World Cup)

"It was a shock for me; I had played the ICC Trophy and other internationals but was never reported," Rafique recalls.

The time he took to rectify the problem an the presence of rival spinner Enamul Haque kept him out of favour until this year.

"Cricket is my bread and butter so I never thought of leaving it, I kept on playing in the league and I knew my day would come," he explains.

Recalled for the series against South Africa, Rafique grabbed the chance with both hands, setting a new national best with 6-77 in the Dhaka Test.

Rafique was not selected for either of the two Tests on the Australian tour but impressed in the one-dayers.

"Playing in Australia is the ultimate; facilities wise and standard wise they are heads and shoulder above others," he goes on.

He continued his form on tour in Pakistan and with 5-118 in Peshawar helped his team get the first innings lead for the first time in Test cricket.

Another five-wicket haul in Multan gave his team their best chance so far to win their first ever Test.

"Unfortunately we could not win the Test but a Test win is in the offing," he promises.

England may yet get more than they bargained for.

chinaman
October 6, 2003, 02:02 PM
Wonderful article. Thanks oracle.

acbizz
October 6, 2003, 02:30 PM
Go Rafique!

Hasib
October 7, 2003, 05:36 AM
Was the chucking aligations false, or did he correct his action?

fwullah
October 7, 2003, 12:11 PM
Rafique corrected his action. All his balls were not alleged to be under suspect. Only the balls that he used to try to bowl faster - at those times his bowling action was illegal.

I think Rafique has recently learned to bowl this 'arm ball', am I correct? Because I remember Enamul Haque being an expert on the 'arm ball' not Rafique.

The article makes me proud of Rafique and one question pops up in my head "why can't we bring more cricketers like him - coming out from the lower class people - playing for Bangladesh?".

Arnab
October 7, 2003, 12:18 PM
Ooh...those are loaded words! "lower class"? What does that mean as far as cricket is concerned? Aren't we all muslims, or whatever, equal under god? :P

Rho
October 7, 2003, 01:45 PM
well Rafique Roques.
But I'm hurt by fwullah's suggestion of "lower class" people.
Arnab such is the way of the world. Religion doesn't matter. There's an unwritten divide between people who can throw away their extra bread vs. people who cannot afford to eat at all.

Maybe just me, but I'd refer to a person to be of "lower class" if the person is lacking manner. I.e. more primitive. Unfortunately fwullah and many others use the term to mean something very racist.

Mahmood
October 7, 2003, 01:49 PM
Ok guys, take it ez on her. Lower class do sound odd to us, specially the ones living in the USA. In Bangladesh, it is widely used to mean poor family.

Just read her post agains with "poor family" instead of "lower class". It does not sound that bad now, does it?

Pundit
October 7, 2003, 02:23 PM
Easy does it !

Remember, while we Bengalis are not over-achievers by any means, we are neither burdened with a 200 year legacy of racism.

Hence, we do not need to set "politically correct" examples at every opportunity.

But doing so in any case always helps, anyway.

Just curious Fahmida, why did you not use "poorer" or "under priviledged" background, or something alike.

Now I've really done it - this is a cricket only forum, ain't it ?? Just trying to get in her head.

Nascer
October 7, 2003, 08:10 PM
[Edited on 6-11-2004 by Nascer]

Carte Blanche
October 7, 2003, 08:44 PM
^word!!!

fab
October 7, 2003, 09:22 PM
Well, whether we like it or not, there is a socio-economic class system in Bangladesh. And whether we like it or not, people from the so called lower end of the social class spectrum do find it more difficult to make it onto the international arena without having contacts etc.

Fwullah's point is right, we should encourage and promote talented people from ALL classes.