India vs Bangladesh 2019: Bangladesh cricketers call off strike, India tour to go ahead as scheduled
After a controversial week for Bangladesh cricket, things have finally fallen into place. The dispute started with Shakib Al Hasan’s comments about the poor treatment of local and national players by the board and later turned into a public feud with top cricketers going to the media and listing out demands for the entire cricketing community to notice.
However, with both parties finally coming to an agreement, the India tour that could have been compromised is now scheduled to go on as decided.
Late on Wednesday evening, the dispute was resolved with the Bangladesh Cricket Board agreeing to most of the demands that were put forward by the cricketers, including two new stipulations. The strike was then called off with immediate effect.
Addressing the media in a joint press conference with Shakib Al Hasan, BCB chief Nazmul Hassan stated that most of the demands were met and the players were ready to take part in the ongoing National Cricket League and the preparatory camp from October 25th.
"We have agreed to meet up most of their demands..We had earlier decided to cancel the third round of the NCL, but as the players decided to play we have shifted it to next Saturday. The national camp will start from October 25.”
"They had sent 11 demands where BCB had nothing to do with the CWAB related demand while we have decided to agree on the remaining demands apart from the one where it was stated that players will be allowed to play in more than two franchise-based tournaments.I don't think there are many players who are offered more than two franchise-based tournaments and we will make the decision regarding participation of them in the franchise-based cricket on a case-to-case basis.”
Earlier in the week, top cricketers from Bangladesh, including Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mushfiqur Rahim, and Tamim Iqbal, had expressed their frustration and anger over how the Bangladesh Cricket Board were running the most popular game in the country. They were particularly concerned about the treatment of players, domestic and international, by the board. The cricketers then put forward a 11-point demand list and stated they won’t be returning to the field unless the demands were met.
BCB chief Namul Hassan condemned the behavior and said the players should have come to the board first, rather than the media. Mashrafe Mortaza, one of Bangladesh cricket’s stars, was appointed by Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to mediate the matter.
In a roller-coaster Wednesday for Bangladesh cricket, two additional points were also included in the 11-point demand list. One was gender parity, as the men's team felt that women cricketers should be treated equally by the board. Speaking to the media, left-arm paceman Mustafizur Rahman stated:
"We have sent a letter to the board placing our 13-point demand but that is nothing like a legal notice. We want gender parity so we want that wherever it is possible our male and female cricketers are treated equally by the board."
"We want revenue sharing by the board as we believe that Bangladesh will be the second biggest market in Asia in cricket after India and is on its way to be one of the leading ones in the world.”
Shakib Al Hasan sounded satisfied with the meeting and the outcome, but his major concern is the execution of these demands. He also said that players will be joining the national camp from 25th October.
"We can say how satisfied we are when these assurances will be implemented... Till now, I am happy. The board promised to resolve all the matters one by one very soon. I hope they will do it in the quickest possible time... We raised those two demands just now and the board needs time to discuss it. I am okay with it for the time being. We are joining the national camp from October 25."
The national team is scheduled to attend a preparatory camp from October 25 under their new bowling consultant and former New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori, along with their limited-overs bowling coach Neil McKenzie.
Bangladesh are scheduled to play three T20Is and two Test matches on their tour to India. They will play their first match of the ICC Test championships when they take on India in the first Test beginning November 14.
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