Posted by anccricket on October 25, 2008 at 2:46 AM
Full name Mashrafe Bin Mortaza
Born October 5, 1983, Norail, Jessore
Major teams Bangladesh, Asia XI, Khulna Division, Kolkata Knight Riders
Also known as Koushik
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm fast-medium
Young, quick and aggressive, Mashrafe Mortaza has emerged as the leader of Bangladesh's pack of upcoming young pacemen, although fitness remains a problem. He made great strides under the tutelage of Andy Roberts, working on his stamina, and he was given his first Test cap against Zimbabwe at Dhaka in 2001-02, in what was his first-class debut - indeed by mid-2006 he had played only seven first-class matches outside the Test arena. Though banging it in is his preferred style, Mashrafe proved adept at reining in his attacking instincts to concentrate on line and length. He excelled in the second Test against England in 2003-04, taking 4 for 60 in the first innings to keep Bangladesh in touch, but suffered a twisted knee towards the end of the game that kept him out of Tests for over a year. He was recalled towards the end of 2004, and subsequently enhanced his reputation on the inaugural tour of England, standing head and shoulders above his team-mates in a torrid series. He is not a complete mug with the bat. A persistent back injury caused him to return home early and miss the Test series in Sri Lanka in September 2005 - the sixth time he had failed to last throughout a tour - but he was back to face the Australians in April 2006, and removed Matthew Hayden early on to start the Aussies' embarrassment in the first Test at Fatullah. Mortaza broke Aftab Ahmed's national record when he took 6 for 26 to seal a 3-0 win in the one-day series against Kenya in August. Mortaza had a poor Champions Trophy in October-November during which he took only two wickets in three games but he struck form against Zimbabwe and Scotland in the one-day series that followed. Although he's still Bangladesh's spearhead, he has often struggled to maintain the intensity and stamina after starting a good spell. At his peak, he can be a matchwinner, like when his 4 for 44 set up Bangladesh's maiden ODI win against New Zealand in 2008. That form prompted the IPL's Kolkata Knight Riders to to sign him on for $600,000 in February 2009. After Bangladesh's disappointing campaign in the World Twenty20, he was named captain for the tours of West Indies and Zimbabwe. However, an injury at the start of the tour forced him home and he handed over the captaincy temporarily to Shakib Al Hasan.