Uncertainty looms over Tigers’ return to int’l cricket

Bangladesh bowling coach Ottis Gibson could not help but applaud the shot that Tamim Iqbal played off Taskin Ahmed’s delivery during team’s training session at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium in Mirpur on Monday. As a pace bowling coach, Gibson wants his pacers to take stern test of the batsmen. However, Tamim’s eye-catching shot was so impressive that he could not help but clap.

The players of Bangladesh team have been practicing well for the last one and a half months. Foreign coaching staff also came to Dhaka last week. As part of the precaution, they were tested for corona. Everything was being done for one purpose, to do well during Tigers' upcoming Test series tour of island nation, Sri Lanka.

However, now all the efforts of the cricketers or the initiative of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) may go in vain as on Monday BCB president Nazmul Hassan said that the board were perplexed by the conditions that Sri Lanka had asked to be maintained during the tour. 

He reiterated that BCB were going to communicate that the tour was not possible under such protocols. Hours after the BCB president clarified his position, Namal Rajapaksa, Sri Lanka's youth and sports minister, tweeted that he had instructed the SLC to reconsider the BCB's demands in consultation with their Covid task force.

The BCB has somewhat lost hope of touring the island nation. So the question is, if the Lanka tour does not happen, what can the BCB do now to bring back country’s cricket?

BCB president Nazmul Hassan, said, “We will bring cricket back. I don't know if it will be with any international side. If the Sri Lanka tour is cancelled, domestic cricket will return. I won't tell what we are going to do but Bangladesh’s cricket will soon get back in action.”

Nazmul, however, did not specify what kind of tournament would bring back domestic cricket. However, in the current corona situation of the country, it is difficult to return to the Dhaka Premier League (DPL). 

That was understood in Nazmul's words, “We can't handle all the clubs. We will do something with the clubs we can manage. It could be 40 players, it could be 160 players. But we have to keep in mind the health issues. We will try our best to keep the players safe. But definitely cricket will return.”

The plan hinted by the BCB president suggests that domestic cricket could return with the National League (NCL) or the Bangladesh Cricket League (BCL). Whatever the situation unfolds in coming days, the cricketers will be happy to get back to any form of cricket.