Shifts focus on domestic cricket
The stalemate between Bangladesh Cricket Board and Sri Lanka Cricket came to a disappointing end on Monday with BCB president Nazmul Hasan calling off the tour after the boards failed to reach an agreement on the quarantine policy.
Bangladesh national team was supposed to fly for Sri Lanka on September 27 for a three-Test series but things got derailed when Sri Lanka’s COVID-19 Taskforce remained adamant about their two-week mandatory quarantine rule for all new arrivals.
BCB asked for a shorter quarantine period and SLC also voiced BCB’s demands to its higher authorities, but they refused to budge from their stance.
The BCB chief, after inaugurating a food distribution programme at the BCB Academy ground on the occasion of prime minister Sheikh Hasina’s 74th birth anniversary, told the reporters that due to Sri Lankan government’s stern health regulations, the series could not go ahead.
‘After we cleared our stand about quarantine rules Sri Lanka Cricket contacted several authorities and expressed our demands which were mostly accepted. But both the boards got stuck on one clause which is the most important thing, the 14-day quarantine policy which is mandatory,’ Nazmul said.
‘Sri Lanka series will be rescheduled when there will not be any issues regarding a quarantine. But the practice of the cricketers will go on for 15 more days,’ he added.
Later on the day BCB gave an official statement, saying that the series, which is part of the ICC Test Championship, has been postponed and will be rescheduled at a suitable time.
‘After a careful review of the guideline, the BCB has communicated to the SLC that the circumstances do not allow us to proceed with the tour at this stage,’ BCB chief executive officer Nizamuddin Chowdhury was quoted as saying in the statement.
‘The BCB and SLC are committed to fulfilling respective FTP itineraries and will work together on rescheduling this series to a mutually agreeable window in the near future,’ he added.
This is the second time the series has been postponed as it was originally scheduled to take place in July but got pushed back to October-November due to the pandemic.
Nazmul had earlier said that the board will look to restart domestic cricket if the Sri Lanka series fell through and on Monday he mentioned two new tournaments that are currently in the works.
‘We have talked about resumption of domestic cricket with few possibilities. We could either organise a corporate league with few teams or we could organise a tournament with national team players, High Performance unit players and Under-19 players,’ said the BCB chief.
Nazmul also said that they will finalise the details of the proposed tournaments in the next 5-6 days.
The BCB president also said that they are not thinking about hosting international series in the current situation and want to focus on resuming Dhaka Premier League, which has been put on hold since mid-March, and other pending domestic competitions.
‘We can bring any team if we want to, but I would like to observe the global situation. If we can run the domestic tournaments successfully, then we can think about inviting a foreign team, not now,’ he said.
‘We have to finish the pending [Dhaka Premier] League and prepare for the next season’s league as well. Maybe this year’s league will be shortened to a single-league format, because we want to finish by this year if possible. Gradually we will start first division, second division and other competitions.’
-With New Age input