Nazmul blasts, thanks media

January 31, 2014

Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hasan took contrasting views on the media upon his arrival in Dhaka from the ICC meeting on Thursday, first blaming them for creating an outcry before thanking them for outstanding support.  The ICC meeting discussed a proposal put forward by cricketing giants India, Australia and England, who wanted to effectively introduce a tier-system, putting Bangladesh in the Intercontinental Cup.
Initial reports suggested that the BCB sided with the proposal before backtracking amid huge protest. Nazmul had to take a bold stance at the Dubai meeting in the face of mounting pressure from India.
Bangladesh eventually became the first country to formally oppose the proposal, forcing the so-called ‘Big Three’ to drop the two-tier system.
The BCB saw it as a huge victory and gave Nazmul a hero’s welcome upon his arrival at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in the morning. Most of the BCB directors and officials were present at the airport to receive Nazmul, defying the early morning chill.
Hundreds of employees from Beximco, a corporate group where Nazmul works, were also present at the airport, though some revealed that they had no idea why they had been asked to be present at the airport.
The three directors who reportedly voted against the ‘Big Three’ proposal in a January 23 BCB meeting were, however, conspicuously absent at the airport.
Dozens of media members were present at the airport as the BCB had formally invited them for a press conference upon Nazmul’s arrival. An over-enthusiastic BCB director in charge of the logistics committee even arranged transport for the media to the press conference early in the morning.
Nazmul, however, dodged the media at the airport, saying that he could not speak before apprising his directors on the matter. He went to the BCB headquarters at 11:00am and held an informal meeting with the directors before finally meeting the press in the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium conference room.
Nazmul said that media reports suggesting that the BCB had sided with the proposal in a 20-3 vote made it difficult for him to convince opposing camps of Bangladesh’s position.
‘It hurt me that the Bangladesh media could give such news after we had officially given them a brief,’ said Nazmul.
‘It was written the next day that we had approved it with a majority of 20 to 3.
‘Three countries immediately cancelled their appointments and I couldn’t talk with them.
‘We called Sri Lanka during the meeting and told them it wasn’t passed in the board meeting. I needed an appointment from them. Similarly, I fixed appointments with five other countries,’ Nazmul said.
‘I lost the groups that I could have turned, and when I went to the ICC meeting and said that I was against the motion, they asked me: ‘how can you say no to us when your board approved it?’
‘It was totally a disaster for me. All the talk and news about it created problems for me at every step,’ he added, explaining his position at the meeting.
Nazmul insisted that the meeting on January 23 was about a strategic issue and nothing else.
‘There was one vote about whether we go there and see which seven teams had gone with them and which two were against it,’ he said.
‘In that situation, whether Bangladesh votes or not, it will be passed. What should we do? I didn’t count the hands, but most of them raised their hands. They said I should do what I feel is best for the country. Three said ‘you should oppose’.’
The BCB president, however, avoided a question as to why his BCB colleagues did not have the moral courage to defend Bangladesh under the circumstances.
Later in the evening, the BCB sent a statement thanking the media for their role.
‘The BCB is grateful to the members of local print, electronic and online media for their continuous backing and for the genuine goodwill extended to our cricket. As ever, we have found you on our side during a period when we needed your support the most,’ the statement quoted Nazmul as saying.

-With New Age input

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