Sabbir Rahman is all set to be out of international cricket for the next six months after the Bangladesh Cricket Board's (BCB) disciplinary committee recommended that as punishment for the batsman yesterday for abusing a fan on social media and keeping in mind all his past indiscretions.
There is only one formality left before the decision comes into immediate effect, which is the approval of BCB president Nazmul Hassan.
The disciplinary committee has also warned the 26-year old cricketer that another offence would result in a long-term or life ban.
Sabbir's omission from the Asia Cup squad and the BCB boss's comments that his disciplinary issues had an impact on that decision all but confirmed that he was going to face harsh punishment.
"We have recommended to the board president that Sabbir Rahman be suspended from international cricket for six months. We also issued a warning to Mosaddek Hossain. There was no hearing for Nasir Hossain but he may be called in future," BCB director Ismail Haider Mallick informed reporters.
"He [Sabbir] repented. He promised that he would never do such things again. He also admitted to a lot of things," he added.
"We made it clear to him that if there was a repeat of such incidents and he failed to rectify himself, then he would be serving longer suspensions. He had a loss of nearly Tk 1.5 crore from previous punishments. Some people get their act together, some don't. The board president has made it clear that we will be strict on discipline," he continued.
There were questions about whether the punishment was not enough for Sabbir, who has made headlines one after another for disciplinary issues.
"How it can be a lesser punishment? This is by no means a lesser punishment. Every player has a dream to represent the country. He was banned from domestic cricket because of his previous offence. We called him this time for a recent incident on Facebook but he said that his account was hacked but we also took other incidents into consideration," explained Mallick.
The immediate effect of the punishment means Sabbir will be out of the national team until the end of February and will be unavailable for the home series against Zimbabwe and West Indies, as well as part of their New Zealand tour. He will also have to fight hard to play the 2019 World Cup, to be held in England.
Sabbir had just finished serving a ban from domestic cricket for physically assaulting a fan during a first-class match last December for which he was fined Tk 20 lakh and consequently lost his central contract.
TIMELINE OF SHAME
In 2016, Sabbir was fined 30 percent of his contract money of the BPL for a serious disciplinary breach after taking a female guest into his hotel room.
In September 2016, Sabbir was fined 30 percent of his match fee and received two demerit points for ' using language or a gesture that is obscene, offensive or insulting' in and ODI against Afghanistan.
In 2017's BPL, Sabbir featured for the Sylhet Sixers and was fined 40 percent of his match fee after he verbally abused an umpire.
In December 2017, the batsman assaulted a fan during a domestic match and menacingly told match officials to keep it quiet. For this incident, he received a six-month ban from domestic cricket and lost his central contract and was fined Tk 20 lakh.
Sabbir also made headlines for hitting teammate Mehedi Hasan Miraz during a T20I against Afghanistan in June 2018.
In July 2018, Sabbir threatened a Facebook user who had criticised him during the tour of West Indies. This resulted in the latest ban.