According to cricket operations chairman Jalal Yunus, Shakib Al Hasan will meet with BCB president Nazmul Hassan this week to discuss his Test future. Shakib had already written to the BCB stating that he would not be available for Test cricket for the next six months, but things are unclear now after he went unsold at the IPL auction two weeks ago, according to Yunus.
“Shakib had given a letter saying that he won’t be available to play Tests for six months,” Yunus said. “The scenario has changed since he won’t be playing in the IPL. He said that he will sit with the board president after the ongoing ODI series [against Afghanistan] to discuss the matter.
“He won’t just talk about the South Africa series [the Test-leg of which starts on March 30]. Basically, we will ask him for his plan for this year. There have been media reports that he doesn’t want to play Tests, but we know that he wants to play Tests.”
Shakib will be allowed the freedom to express his choices rather than being pushed to play in any manner, according to Yunus. Last year, the BCB began this practice by asking centrally contracted players about their format-specific plans.
“It is not a matter of pick and choose. He might have some problems, so we will consider him if he tells us that he wants to play a certain number of matches in a format,” Yunus said.
“Nobody is bound to play every match. The BCB is not an organisation where we consider players as mere employees. They are also stakeholders. They have the freedom to discuss how many matches they want to play.”
Last month, Shakib Al Hasan missed out on the Test series against New Zealand citing personal concerns. He took a leave of absence for the first time during the 2017-18 South African tour, and then he missed the Sri Lanka Tests last year owing to his IPL obligations.
Shakib has been a very irregular candidate of the Bangladesh team’s Test setup since the 2017-18 South Africa series. He has appeared in less than 40% of the Tests, the reasons for which include injury, his one-year suspension for failing to disclose a corrupt approach, and the rest due to personal reasons.