Mashrafe admired Tamim for respecting other openers like Liton, Soumya and Naim
Former Bangladesh captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza applauded Tamim Iqbal’s decision to not play the upcoming T20 World Cup.
Current Bangladesh ODI skipper Tamim Wednesday took to his social media page to announce his unavailability in the world event, set to take place in the United Arab Emirates and Oman in October-November.
Tamim cited his lack of preparation in T20Is this year, directly playing a big event coming from a long knee injury and the fact that other openers have been tried during his long absence in the format for coming to such a drastic decision.
Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hasan, following Tamim’s announcement, had informed the media that the left-handed batsman was kept part of the Bangladesh T20 World Cup squad.
The BCB boss had praised Tamim’s courageous and visionary decision as well.
Mashrafe through a post on his social media account Wednesday night said, “Everyone should respect Tamim's decision. There's no doubt that Tamim is one of the best batsmen in Bangladesh. His statistics says so. He had every qualification to play in the T20 World Cup, and it is well known that the cricket board and team management would have kept him in the squad."
“Tamim will continue to be one of the best batsmen but nobody wants to see him lose form by playing T20s forcibly. Tamim has a lot more matches to win for Bangladesh. There were reasons behind his decision. His injury being one of them. He hasn't played the last 16 (sic 12) matches. He would create a lot of pressure on himself when playing after such a long break. It could affect his form in Tests and ODIs,” added Mashrafe, who is understood to have had a long conversation with Tamim over phone following the incident.
Mashrafe went on to admire Tamim for respecting other openers like Liton Das, Soumya Sarkar and Mohammad Naim.
Mashrafe expects these cricketers to have a strong vow towards the team and captain Tamim the next time they play ODI games.
Tamim has been a prominent opener for Bangladesh in all three formats of the game for more than 12 years now.
But since 2019, the southpaw played only three times in 23 T20Is.
This year, he missed all matches in the format.
Tamim had cited personal reasons, and subsequently missed the three games against New Zealand in March.
This was followed by a knee injury that forced the experienced Bangladesh batsman to miss the three games against Zimbabwe, the five-match series against Australia last month and also the ongoing series against New Zealand.