Shakib Al Hasan is staying back in South Africa to play the third ODI in Centurion on Wednesday, after initially deciding to return home where several of his family members, including his children, have been hospitalised due to various illnesses. However, Khaled Mahmud, the Bangladesh team director, said Shakib changed his mind on returning to Dhaka on Monday but is likely to do so after the March 23 match. Mahmud said that for the last few days, Shakib had been discussing with his family back home whether to leave the tour or not. The BCB booked a ticket for his return on Monday, but hours later, Shakib decided to stay back.
“A number of his family members are sick so he is in hesitation,” Mahmud said, from Centurion. “He is speaking to his family about whether he needs to return to Dhaka. We have had to book a few tickets for him in the last few days. We booked a ticket today as well because he was supposed to leave today. But Shakib turned it down himself. He will return after playing the third ODI. Definitely, he was supposed to return home, which Jalal bhai said earlier in the day. But shortly afterwards, Shakib decided that he will leave after playing the third ODI.”
“It is a family situation, which is important for everyone. Otherwise, he was very intense from the start of the tour. Very serious about playing. He was play-of-the-match in the first game. He wants to win the series for Bangladesh,” he added.
Bangladesh and South Africa are locked at one-all going into the third ODI in Centurion on Wednesday. The visitors won their first match against South Africa in their backyard in the first ODI on March 18, with Shakib’s 77 a pivotal performance. It also won him the Player-of-the-Match award. Given his mother and two of his children are among the family members who are hospitalized, Shakib Al Hasan is unlikely to stay on after the March 23 game.