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Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Bangladeshi pacer Mashrafe Bin Mortaza has started practicing following his consultation with an Australian orthopaedic expert on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the national team is gearing up to resume their practice for the upcoming World Cup from Wednesday.

Mashrafe and Rubel Hossain took part in an unscheduled practice session on Tuesday morning at the Sher-E-Bangla National Stadium. Bangladesh's bowling coach Ian Pont, physiotherapist Mike Henry and trainer Grant Luden watched over it.

The practice clearly indicated that Mashrafe was getting back his rhythm. Even though he still cannot ball at his usual 21-metre run-up, he went as high as 18 metres during the practice. Earlier, his run up was cut to 60 per cent by the injury on his right knee.

"I had no problem taking almost my full run-up," Mashrafe told reporters.

His pace has also improved. The cricketer also did some extra exercises to treat his knee injury.

Mashrafe consulted orthopaedic surgeon David Young in Sri Lanka's Colombo for opinion on his right knee, which was injured while batting during a club match on Dec 21 last year.

In a statement released by the BCB afterwards it was reported that the pacer might need another operation on the knee following the World Cup.

"Practice will resume on Wednesday. Although not in the team, Mashrafe will join the practice which will help him recover from his injury," BCB media manager Rabid Imam said.

Young had also advised that Mashrafe continues practice as a standby player for the World Cup so that he can regain fitness.

The pacer nicknamed 'Narail Express' was ruled out of the 15-strong World Cup Squad by the selection committee for the injury, a decision Mashrafe termed as the "worst thing that happened in my life."

Mashrafe's exclusion created large-scale dissatisfaction amongst cricket fans and residents of his hometown, Narail, observed a half-day strike to protest the decision.

"I am not thinking about the surgery right now. Young will perform the surgery at a suitable time after the World Cup," said Mashrafe on his way to the gymnasium after the practice.

Instead of going home on holiday, Rubel also took part in the practice. He too had improved and was bowling with a full run-up and in full-speed for the last couple of days without any apparent discomfort.

However, he did confess that some problems remained and added, "They will be gone soon."


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