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Who will be the next after Mash?

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End of an era of Captain Fantastic.Picture- BCB

Mashrafe Mortaza has himself announced his resignation as Bangladesh’s ODI captain,after 2nd ODI against Zimbabwe.

BCB has plenty of candidates to choose his replacement from.The new captain is likely to be announced on March 8.

Shakib is BCB’s preferred long-term captain across formats, despite being suspended till the end of October this year.

In his absence, they have already appointed Mominul Haque in Tests and Mahmudullah in T20Is, but unless results improve drastically over the next seven months, it is likely that Shakib will take over when he returns.

BCB president Nazmul Hassan has already revealed in one of his free-wheeling press conferences that Shakib’s name is under consideration when he becomes eligible to return, suggesting that whoever is picked as Mashrafe’s immediate replacement could take over in a stop-gap role.

In fact, Shakib was expected to take over after his superb 2019 World Cup campaign itself, but Mashrafe did not resign immediately.

Mushfiqur led Bangladesh in all formats from October 2011, before being replaced by Mashrafe in the shorter formats in 2014, and later by Shakib in Tests in 2017.

Bangladesh won 11 out of 37 ODIs under him, including series wins over West Indies and New Zealand at home. He is in superb form, and commands the respect of the dressing room through his hard work and big runs.

But his decision to not tour Pakistan BCB president, who publicly criticised the move. The BCB president has previously criticised Mushfiqur’s captaincy when he fell out with the management during the 2017 South Africa tour.

Mahmudullah is the current T20I captain, and he has coach Russell Domingo’s full support to lead Bangladesh in this year’s T20 World Cup in Australia.

Mahmudullah is a big part of Bangladesh’s limited overs plans, and is regarded as one of the most improved batsmen in the middle-order over the last five years.

He definitely has the respect of the dressing room too, but he is not in the best batting form, having recently been dropped from the Test side. It might boil down to what the BCB president thinks of him.

 

It is unlikely that Tamim desires ODI captaincy at this stage of his career, particularly after going through a tough time with the bat in the 2019 World Cup.

Following that, he took a break from international cricket for a few months, returning only earlier this year.

He recently became the first Bangladesh batsman to reach 7,000 ODI runs, and to remain the team’s most important top-order batsman is likely to be a higher priority for Tamim.

Another popular personality in the dressing room, Tamim is regarded by many as the players’ captain because of his involvement in many team matters. But some also believe that he couldn’t be an ideal option for new captain.

Nothing is impossible in the world of the current BCB administration. Mashrafe hasn’t retired from ODIs and has said that he remains available as a player. That gives the board an  option to reappoint Mashrafe!

In fact, before Mashrafe announced his resignation on Thursday afternoon, some within the administration were reportedly leaning towards this unlikely possibility.

Even if his name is thrown up on March 8, it might be hard to convince Mashrafe, as was the case when he had let of T20I captaincy.

But just from the point of view of the BCB, if Shakib remains in their good books despite his suspension, who is to say that Mashrafe has completely lost favour?

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