Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza made it clear yesterday that there was no 'demand' from his side regarding the inclusion of Sabbir Rahman for the New Zealand tour and that he only gave his 'opinion' to the selectors and the logic behind it.
“The selectors are the sole authority about choosing any player. They wanted my opinion and I gave it to them with cricketing logic. I never told them that they must take Sabbir. They were probably convinced with my opinion and that's why they picked him,” said Mashrafe yesterday in response to the controversy of selecting a player who did not even serve out his full ban.
Mashrafe made the clarification after chief selector Minhajul Abedin told reporters at a press conference on Wednesday: “Let me make this clear, Sabbir's inclusion was mainly because of the captain's demand as he [Mashrafe] firmly asked us to include him and we agreed to it.”
Sabbir's six-month international ban was supposed to end on March 1 but it was reduced by a month to clear the way for a recall for the New Zealand tour.
Mashrafe said that he was not the authority who could reduce the ban and it was rather the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) who holds the power to take any such decision.
“The selectors definitely included Sabbir only after knowing that he was available for selection. Reducing the ban was not under my jurisdiction and also not under the selectors' jurisdiction; it rests with the board and its disciplinary committee,” said Mashrafe.
The Bangladesh ODI skipper also said that there were enough logic and reasons behind his support for Sabbir's inclusion for the number seven batting position, adding that he has to do everything for the best option for the World Cup to be held in England from May this year.