NEW DELHI: Questioning Shakib Al Hasan's commitment for the national team after his assertion that he needs time off international cricket and might skip the ODI series against South Africa, Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hassan asked whether the former skipper would have wanted a similar break from the IPL had he been picked in the auction.
Shakib had initially refused to play the Test series against South Africa as he wanted to make himself available for the IPL but he went unsold at the auctions. Last week, he was named in Bangladesh's ODI and Test squads for the tour of South Africa later this month.
However on Sunday, the veteran all-rounder said he's feeling burdened amid regular international cricket, and that a break would help him rejuvenate. "I think it is logical to think that if he was in a poor physical and mental state, he wouldn't have given his name in the IPL [auction]," Hassan was quoted saying by ESPNCricinfo.
"But he went ahead with it. So, does it mean that if he got his IPL contract, he would have said the same thing? We can't do anything if he doesn't want to play [for Bangladesh]. But he can't keep saying I will play this game, I won't play that game. We are soft on those who we love, but they also have to be professional. Otherwise we will have to take decisions that no one will like," he added.
Shakib had said he is mentally and physically exhausted and not ready to play in the upcoming tour of South Africa. "Considering my mental and physical state, I don't think I can play so much international cricket. If I get a break, if I get my interest back, I can play with more ease. I was like a passenger in the Afghanistan series, which is never desirable," he said.
Shakib, who scored 74 runs and took seven wickets in the three ODIs and two T20Is against Afghanistan, said he felt like a "passenger". "I didn't enjoy the ODIs and T20Is. I don't think I should be in the South Africa tour with such a mentality. I want to meet everyone's expectations when I am playing. There's no guarantee of my best performance, but at least I will know that I tried hardest for the country. I don't want to waste the time or someone's spot," he added.
The three-match ODI series between Bangladesh and South Africa begins on March 18 which will be followed by two Tests, starting from March 30 while the IPL gets underway March 26.