BCB seek clarity from Mashrafe Mortaza about ODI future
Published: 10:47 PM, 15 August 2019
Bangladesh Cricket Board has expressed the desire to gain some clarity over Mashrafe Mortaza's future as they look to build on for the next World Cup. BCB is planning to host a farewell for their inspirational ODI captain through a one-off ODI against Zimbabwe in Dhaka next month.
BCB recently announced Bangladesh will host Afghanistan in a one-off Test, followed by a tri-nation T20I series involving Afghanistan and Zimbabwe in September.
Though BCB is yet to announce officially about solitary ODI against Zimbabwe as they are looking for a suitable time slot to host it - either in between the Test and tri-series or following the two series'. Cricbuzz understands board is unable to fix the date because they are yet to get some clarity from Mortaza. BCB president Nazmul Hasan confirmed that they are going to sit with Mortaza in the coming weeks to know about his future. Mortaza had earlier intended to retire after the 2019 World Cup but didn't go through with the decision.
"We don't know what is going on in his mind," Nazmul told Cricbuzz on Thursday (August 15). "Let him come [from his village where he is celebrating Eid] and we are hoping to sit with him to know about his future plan]."
Mortaza's retirement plans have been frequent rounds as the form has dipped for the pacer. The veteran though had stressed he'd consider his future plans after returning to Bangladesh after the World Cup. The unexpected injury ahead of the tour of Sri Lanka came as a blow as it stopped him from having a look at his own self and form after the disastrous World Cup - where he picked only one wickets from eight matches.
Masharafe's retirement talks first emerged when Bangladesh played their third ODI of the home series against the West Indies in Sylhet in 2018 and it was speculated that the game will be his last at home, though Mashrafe had never confirmed it.
As Mashrafe left an impression during the World Cup that he intends to retire in front of the home crowd it is turning out to be a huge challenge for BCB to fix it up considering the schedule. Bangladesh will play their next ODI in Ireland in June 2020 while they are expected to host Sri Lanka in December 2020.
BCB officials indicated that they will have to make an effort to arrange the ODI with Zimbabwe as it involves heavy finances and if Zimbabwe eventually agrees to play then the board will have to cough up around Tk60 lakhs [BDT] to cover up the logistical and other expenses.
BCB chief selector Minhajul Abedin has also confirmed that they are not aware of any ODI against Zimbabwe or the fitness of Mortaza. "Mashrafe was initially in the 35-member squad but he withdrew his name. Probably he is not fit yet so we decided not to include him in our preliminary squad."
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