Sports, Cricket

Zimbabwe series could be Mashrafe’s last

Published : 08 Jan 2020 07:28 PM | Updated : 26 Aug 2020 02:21 PM

Mashrafe Bin Mortaza’s retirement issue came to the fore once again after the inclusion of the three ODI matches in Bangladesh’s home series against Zimbabwe. The series is scheduled to be taken place in February instead of March and originally comprised with one Test and five T20 International matches. However the latest change of the itinerary saw the inclusion of three ODI matches here, raising the speculation whether those three ODIs were added to give Mashrafe a befitting farewell at home ground.

Mashrafe, still the captain of the ODI team, played his last international match against Pakistan in World Cup 2019.  Though he was ready to play against Sri Lanka, in the last minute he had to opt out the three-match ODI series due to injury.

There was whisper about his retirement after the last match in the World Cup but at the last minute he had to change his mind due to the insistence of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hasan Papon who said that Mashrafe will retire at home ground and if necessary they will organize a special ODI match for him.

Mashrafe hasn’t been playing longer version cricket since 2009 while had already retired from the T20 cricket. Only format he is playing is ODI cricket. Bangladesh has not played any ODI match after the World Cup at home ground and they only had three 50-over matches in Sri Lanka.

However BCB has not said anything officially about the retirement of Mashrafe Mortaza.  It’s media committee chairman Jalal Yunus said Mashrafe himself would take the decision of when he would walk into the sunset. “We cannot decide anything about Mashrafe’s retirement. He should take his own decision and he deserves a big farewell from us,” he said.

There is also some confusion over Mashrafe’s central contract issue as to whether he will be available for all the matches is very much in doubts due to his other commitments. The BCB is set to announce the centrally contracted players’ list within some days.  Shakib Al Hasan is set to loss his contract because of serving the ban imposed by ICC.