ঢাকাসোমবার, ৪ঠা মার্চ, ২০২৪ খ্রিস্টাব্দ

Mahmud wonders why seniors are afraid of quitting

Sport desk | Ctgpost
আগস্ট ১৬, ২০২৩ ৬:২৫ অপরাহ্ণ
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Former Bangladesh national team captain and BCB director Khaled Mahmud wondered why the current senior national team cricketers didn’t have the guts to retire from the game despite being no longer able to perform at their best.

 

Among the so-called ‘fabulous five’ of Bangladesh, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza stepped down from captaincy in March 2020, but he has yet to announce his retirement from international cricket but has continued to play in the domestic circuit.

 

Other than him, wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim and Tamim Iqbal retired from T20 internationals, while Mahmudullah quit Test cricket.

 

Mahmudullah and his exclusion from the forthcoming Asia Cup have been hot topics in the Bangladesh cricket fraternity for the last few days. This emerged after the Tamim saga took the cricket fraternity by storm.

 

In both players’ cases, form and fitness have been issues.

 

‘I had the guts and retired from the ground. I knew my time was over and the youngsters were coming in. If I don’t leave when it’s time, how will the new players come in? Players have to make the decision,’ Mahmud, his retirement from cricket in 2006, told reporters on Tuesday.

 

‘It’s difficult to know when the right time is.’

 

He also mentioned the likes of Akram Khan, Minhajul Abedin, and Habibul Bashar as examples of players who left the game when it was time. Mahmud said it was more like love than a profession to them.

 

‘We were not professionals like the lads now. We earned very little money. That was our love, not a profession. We could leave when it was time,’ he said.

 

‘I don’t know why this generation’s senior players are afraid to leave the game. My point is, you have to know when you have to put a full stop.

 

 

‘With all respect to the players, I think this is their personal decision. We can’t force anyone to say that it’s time to retire. The players need to decide for themselves when to retire or continue playing the game.’

 

Mahmud also labelled Mahmudullah as a fighter, and he felt that he could always fight back to the team and exclusion from the Asia Cup or the World Cup was not the end of the world.

 

‘I won’t say this is the end of him. Mahmudullah is a good fighter. But it’s true that he is getting old. I still believe that if he [Mahmudullah] keeps fighting the way he always has, you can’t say he is finished. An opportunity may come again for him,’ he said.

 

‘He is still a contracted cricketer for BCB. Riyad will keep the sportsman spirit, I think. He will fight with himself, which is the biggest thing. I think it’s too early to say he’s finished. As long as he doesn’t announce his retirement, he will be a part of the pipeline,’ he added.

 

The former national team captain also lauded the inclusion of young opener Tanzid Hasan Tamim, who grew up under his tutelage during his stint in the Under-19s, for the Asia Cup.

 

‘Tamim [Tanzid] could be the prime choice for opening with Liton [Das]. The way senior Tamim [Iqbal] used to bat in his early days, junior Tamim also bats in the same manner.’

 

The 52-year-old also acknowledged that Bangladesh must play their best to achieve success in the Asia Cup, which will be jointly hosted by Pakistan and Sri Lanka.