Monday, 27 March, 2023

Shakib-Tamim rift doesn’t bother Hathurusingha

  • Sports Correspondent
  • 1 March, 2023 12:00 AM
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Shakib-Tamim rift doesn’t bother Hathurusingha
Captains of England and Bangladesh pose a photo with the ODI series trophy at the Oasis Green Area of Pan Pacific Sonargoan Hotel in the capital on Tuesday. – BCB PHOTO

Bangladesh head coach Chandika Hathurusingha said on Tuesday that he is not losing his sleep over the existing rift between two top cricketers - Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal.

Since the Bangladesh Cricket Board President Nazmul Hassan Papon revealed that these two senior cricketers are not on talking terms when they are not playing together, it became the most discussed topic in the cricket fraternity.

“I have been on the job for seven days. I have been in dressing rooms and I have been in teams where everyone doesn’t get along. Still, when they step out, they play as a team. When you play for your national team that’s what you expect,” Hathurusingha told reporters during a press conference ahead of the three-match ODI series opener, scheduled today.

“You don’t need to be best friends to go out and have dinner. As long as it is not affecting, I don’t see it as a problem,” Hathurusingha said, adding that he feels time has come to see how they can develop a leadership group for the next generation.

A few days back after a match scenario practice session, Hathurusingha had a long meeting with six cricketers at the SBNS that included Tamim, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Liton Das, Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Najmul Hossain Shanto.

 It gave a hint that he is working on developing the next crop of cricketers to take the helm after the seniors depart.

“It is not a challenge. It is a duty. As we know that our top four seniors have played for 15-17 years. They won’t play for another 10 years. We need to bring up all the next generation of leadership now itself. I don’t have to pick them. They pick themselves in terms of how they behave and perform. Liton, Miraz and Shanto were there as well. Taskin and Fizz were in the gym,” he said.

“They are putting their hands up in terms of their attitude, how they prepare and behave in the dressing room, and also their performance, to be the leaders for the next phase of Bangladesh cricket,” he said, adding that he will allow Shakib to decide whether he is mentally and physically fit for the first ODI after he arrived from the USA just 48 hours before the first game.

“There’s so much cricket being played. The opposition just arrived two days before, and you have to play. That’s the nature of the scheduling. Shakib had a family emergency, so he is back from a long flight. He said he is feeling good. He practised yesterday and also today. I think you have to back him, because of his experience and who he is. He knows his body. I have to go by his judgement,” he concluded.