Dhaka - Former Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful said on Monday that he has set his sights on a comeback with the national side after
his five-year ban for match-fixing ended.
"I am feeling really nice as I was waiting for this day
for the last five years. (I told myself) when August 13, 2018 came I would be
available for national team again," Ashraful said from Britain.
"Over the last five years I never felt I wouldn't be
able to come back. I never lacked this confidence. I always felt I would come
back," he said.
Ashraful was fined and banned for eight years - cut on
appeal to five - in 2014 for match and spot fixing during a T20 tournament in
Bangladesh in 2013.
The Bangladesh Cricket Board partially lifted his ban in
2016, allowing him to play domestic first-class and List A cricket.
But he was still suspended from international and
franchise-based Twenty20 cricket for another two years.
Ashraful, who turned 34 in July, showed a glimpse of his
talent in domestic 50-over Dhaka Premier League competition last year when he
scored five centuries in 13 matches to accumulate 665 runs at an average of
Bangladesh chief selector Minhajul Abedin told reporters in
Dhaka on Sunday however that Ashraful must prove his form and fitness.
Ashraful, who played 61 Tests, 177 one-day internationals
and 23 Twenty20 internationals, acknowledged he has a tough road ahead to
revive his international career.
"Of course it will be tough to get a chance in the
Bangladesh team," he said.
"Still I think if I can perform. There is plenty of
room for me to serve Bangladesh team. This is what I believe," said
He said he believed he would face little problem in the
dressing room if he was picked again, since he always maintained a good
relationship with his former team-mates.
Bangladesh last week completed a T20 series victory over the
West Indies in Florida.