HYDERABAD : Kamrul Islam Rabbi is one of the newest entrants into the Bangladesh squad. The right-arm medium pacer made his debut against England in 2016, after playing 97 first-class matches. But the international cricketer is not even as fast as a scribe reporting from the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here.
Salahuddin Muhammad, a journalist for a TV channel based in Bangladesh and winner of the Pacer Hunt Programme in 2008, says he beat star pacer Rubel Hossain to grab the title in 2008.
“I was placed first with a delivery registering 83 mph and he was second with 82 mph and Rabbi was placed in the top four,” the 28-year-old told Express.
So, why is he sitting in a press box? “I was a little older than both of them (Hossain and Rabbi). Rubel got into the U-19 national team and I did not have a proper team,” said Muhammad, who played first-division cricket in 2009.
Originally from Satkhira district in the southwestern part of the country, his travails took him to Dhaka where he wished to showcase his talent in the Dhaka Premier Division League — a List A tournament. “I had bowled well in the first-division, picking up 18 wickets in 10 matches. But, there is a lot of politics in cricket there. Players, who were easily available and had lower base price were selected,” lamented the reporter.
With the future looking bleak, Muhammad contemplated a journalism course just because the college had a cricket ground. “I was interested in journalism but the primary reason was that I still wanted to bowl,” he exclaimed. Eventually, he had to hang his boots owing to financial constraints, being away from the family and a back injury he suffered in 2010 in college. “It is an indescribable feeling,” he said.
“Before coming to India I met Rabbi. He is such a jovial person and has struggled a lot. I am happy for him. We were a lot closer but ever since he has become a part of the national team, it has been a little difficult to reach him,” Muhammad, who has been a journalist since 2012 said.