Former captain Khaled Mashud was appointed team operations manager for Bangladesh's tour of New Zealand this month following a meeting of the Bangladesh Cricket Board's (BCB's) board of directors meeting yesterday. CEO Nizamuddin Chowdhury confirmed the 42-year-old's appointment, who played 42 Tests and 126 ODIs during his long career.
As a cricketer, Mashud inarguably made an immense contribution to Bangladesh cricket. His hardworking approach was exemplary for many young cricketers and in that regard there was nothing wrong to see a player of his stature taking the job. Still, questions were raised yesterday while BCB president Nazmul Hassan was speaking to the press about the outcomes from the meeting.
And there was a valid reason behind the curiosity because when it came to disciplinary issues, the man from Rajshahi's behaviour was a far cry from his on-field contributions -- especially if we recall what happened during Bangladesh's disastrous 2003 World Cup campaign in South Africa that saw the board form a two-member inquiry committee.
The body of Commodore (retd) Mujibur Rahman and Syed Shamim Ahsan in its findings said: "There were complaints of his [Khaled Mashud's] arrogance, his behaviour, and there were complaints of him using foul language with his teammates as well as the senior management of the team, but above all, there were complaints about his total lack of self-discipline. He had fought with the manager on the issue of tickets, and there are instances where he spent nights out of the hotel."
However, Hassan expressed optimism saying that "hopefully there won't be any trouble". "He [Mashud] has been with us for a while now. He has not done anything which would render us unable to include him. Naturally with his experience, he was in charge of a few responsibilities for some time now (such as recently going on tour with the HP team). So, after looking at him there was confidence and everyone agreed he could be sent along with the team," Hassan said.
With the World Cup approaching, many had raised eyebrows at the board's decision to reduce a ban in order to accommodate a player and that has been repeated after the appointment of someone with a questionable disciplinary record to an important position.