Bangladesh one-day international captain Mashrafee bin Murtaza and team director Khaled Mahmud on Tuesday urged the national players to be more careful about their off-the-field behviour.
‘Our task is to perform well, and as everyone follows us. We need to be careful about our off-the field stuff,’ Mashrafee told reporters on the sideline of a training session in Mipur.
His comments came a day after the Bangladesh Cricket Board penalised two national cricketers, Sabbir Rahman and Tamim Iqbal, for off-the-field breaches during recent National Cricket League and Bangladesh Premier League respectively.
Sabbir was denied a new national contract along with six-month ban from domestic cricket and Tk 20 lakh as fine after he assaulted a minor boy during a recent NCL match in his home town Rajshahi.
Tamim has been fined Tk five lakh as he criticised the Mirpur pitch and outfield after a BPL match.
‘We can’t deny what happened, but we need to be more responsible. It happened with Sabbir, but everyone including me needs to take the lesson from this incident,’ said Mashrafee.
‘First thing we all need to admit is that we are all under the authority of BCB. And everyone follows us, especially the youths, who play in U-15, U-16 and U-19 team,’ he added.
Team director Mahmud added that players should take their punishment with sporting spirit.
‘There are laws in cricket and players have been punished accordingly. I cannot say if the punishment was light or hard. But if someone breaks the rule he has to be punished,’ said Mahumd.
‘I think we all should take it with sportsman spirit. For some players the mistake has been repeated. We don’t want this. National players are the role models. If my words demean my country, I don’t think the BCB will give me any concession,’ said Mahumd.
The former national captain was particularly referring about Tamim, who was punished controversially after he questioned about the quality of Mipur pitch following his Comilla Victorians’ four-wicket win over Rangpur Riders.
BCB president Nazmul Hasan said on Monday that some of the words Tamim used about the outfield left them embarrassed as Bangladesh already got criticism over the ground from the International Cricket Council.
‘You can say this is not an ideal wicket for Twenty20. The kind of wicket you need for Twenty20s, it’s not like that. It’s fine. But why you will speak about the outfield. What is wrong with that?’ Nazmul had told reporters at his Beximco office.
The incident of Sabbir and the controversial penalty of Tamim cast a dark shadow on Bangladesh’s preparation for the upcoming tri-nation tournament and bilateral series against Sri Lanka.
Bangladesh are still smarting from their disastrous series in South Africa, where they failed to win a single match and departure of coach Chandika Hathurusinghe without seeing out his contract only aggravated their problem.
Mashrafee hoped they gloom will go once they do well in the tri-nation tournament and Sri Lanka series.
‘Obviously we are planning to win the series,’ he said. ‘This tri-nation series is an important series for all of us as everyone is upset after the South Africa tour. If we can win this series, the situation might be changed,’ he said.
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