Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan wants to take time out from international cricket, reflecting that he could opt out of the forthcoming series versus South Africa.
Shakib has been included in both ODI and Test squads last week for the series facing 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. I didn’t enjoy the ODIs and T20Is. I don’t think I should be on the South Africa tour with such a mentality. I want to meet everyone’s expectations when I am playing,” Shakib stated.
“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. Playing in this way, as a passenger, it will be like betraying or cheating my teammates and the country,” he appended.
In the recently-finished series versus Afghanistan, Shakib scored 74 runs and took seven wickets in the 3 ODIs and 2 T20Is.
Furthermore, Shakib stated that he had notified Bangladesh Cricket Board chief Hassan about him willing to play versus South Africa, however he was having reconsidering about the series facing Afghanistan.
“I have informed Jalal bhai, who told me to think about it for a couple of days. I am expecting a decision after that. I had earlier spoken with Papon bhai that I will play both the series, but I thought long and hard since the match yesterday. Looking at my mental and physical condition, I need a bit of time. I might skip the ODI series to play the Tests in a better physical condition,” voiced Shakib.
“I think at this stage of my career, I need a long-term plan. I think it is important that we have clarity about everything. My letter to the board didn’t mention six months. I told the board that I wanted to stay out of Tests till November 22 this year. I wanted to concentrate fully on white-ball cricket.”
“We have two World Cups in the next two years. I didn’t want to leave Tests totally, but because we are finding a bit of balance on the Test side, I felt that if I focus on white-ball (formats), considering my age and physical fitness, I could have done better in ODIs and T20Is. I think it is better if I know the long-term plan for myself. There is no point thinking series by series,” he appended.
Bangladesh will play three ODIs versus South Africa on March 18th, 20th and 23rd, as well as two Tests from 31st of March to 8th of April.