Tamim Iqbal hits out at Bangladesh Cricket Board after saying he opted out of World Cup 2023

The 34-year-old said he felt ready to take the plane to India for his fifth World Cup, but described his exclusion from the WC squad as a ‘dirty game’.

Published : Sep 27, 2023 20:57 IST - 2 MINS READ

Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqbal in action.
Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqbal in action. | Photo Credit: AFP

Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqbal in action. | Photo Credit: AFP

Tamim Iqbal opted out of next month’s 50-over World Cup after a dispute with a member of the Bangladesh Cricket Board, the opening batter said on Wednesday while describing the situation as “a dirty game”.

“Someone called me from the top level of the board who is very involved with our cricket. He said that if you go to the World Cup you have to play the matches by managing your (back) injury. So, you better do one thing, don’t play the first match against Afghanistan (on October 7),” Tamim said on a video posted on his official Facebook account.

“I replied that the Afghanistan match is still 12/13 days away. In 12/13 days I will be in better condition. Why shouldn’t I play? Then, he said that if you play you have to bat down the order.

“After hearing this I am shocked as I have never in my 17-year career batted down the order. I feel like I’m being forced to do many things. I said, ‘Look, if you have such thoughts then don’t send me. I don’t want to be in this mess. I don’t want to be part of this dirty game. You make me face something new every day. I don’t want to stay here.’”

Tamim hit 44 in the second ODI against New Zealand on September 23, his first innings back in international cricket since reversing his decision to retire in July. It was also followed by an injury layoff which forced him to miss this month’s Asia Cup.

The 34-year-old said he felt ready to take the plane to India for his fifth World Cup.

Tamim said, “I was very happy after that game, 44 is not a big score but I was very happy at the way I batted. I felt confident.”

Local media reported that Tamim told the selectors that he would play just five matches in the World Cup considering his long-term back injury, and the team management responded by saying they did not want to include a player in the squad who was only half fit.

Tamim, however, denied the reports. He said, “The medical department believed that if I was rested and played the second warm-up match (against England) on October 2, I would get enough time (to prepare) ahead of the first World Cup match.

“I am sure chief selector Minhajul Abedin also denied the report that I told him that I would play five matches in the World Cup.”

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