Sharing dressing room with some of the world’s best will help me grow, says Salma Khatun

Salma Khatun. © Getty Images

Bangladesh T20I skipper Salma Khatun has expressed that she was surprised after being picked as one of the overseas stars for the third edition of the Women’s T20 Challenge to be held in UAE from November 4 to 9. Women’s CricZone had earlier reported two Bangladeshi players will be a part of the event this time.

The BCCI announced the squads on Sunday (October 11) along with the match fixtures. Khatun has been drafted in the Trailblazers squad which will be led by Smriti Mandhana. Khatun’s teammate Jahanara Alam will play for Velocity – she has played for the same team last year too.

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“It was quite surprising to learn that I am picked in the competition,” Salma, was quoted as saying to Cricbuzz. She got the news while at home in Khulna. “I came to know about it from Touhid bhai (BCB women’s wing manager). He called me and gave me the news of my inclusion two weeks ago and it was surprising as there was no cricket around for the last couple of months.”

Despite no cricket for the six months or so, the 30-year-old felt that it’s her experience that may have been in the mind of the organisers to pick her.  “It (experience) could be a reason they have picked me because when there is no cricket around experienced campaigners are likely to adapt faster than others.

“Obviously, I am excited to get a chance in such a big event. I am happy. Last year only Jahanara got a chance from our country but this year two cricketers are picked and I am one of them. I cannot describe my happiness through words,” she added.

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Khatun, who has been training alone in Khulna for the past two months, will be in action at the BCB academy premises from October 13. “All-rounders have an edge over others in the shortest format and being an all-rounder I am looking forward to grab any opportunity. But more than playing, getting the chance to share the dressing room with some of the best cricketers in the world certainly will help me grow as I can learn a lot watching them closely how they respond on certain situations,” she added.

The duo will have their COVID-19 tests done on October 14 and 19 and will fly out to UAE on October 21. “We have appointed High-Performance coach Mahbub al Zaki to look after them ahead of the tournament and they will start their training activities from tomorrow,” Touhid Mahmud, the BCB women’s team wing manager said.