Not thinking of replacing Mominul as Test captain: Papon
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hassan Papon said that he personally does not want to replace Mominul Haque as the Test captain of Bangladesh anytime soon.
Bangladesh will be leaving for a multi-format tour of the West Indies in the first week of June and there have been talks of replacing Mominul as the Test captain ahead of the tour after yet another sombre outing by the cricketer against Sri Lanka in the recently-concluded series.
"I actually do not want it [to replace Mominul as captain]. I do not have a problem with his captaincy. That we are thinking of replacing him or may replace him -- nothing of this sort has been communicated with Mominul from me or any of us in the BCB," informed Hassan to The Daily Star today.
In fact, the BCB president is unwilling to bring any changes in any format of the game.
"Not only for this upcoming series [against West Indies], I actually do not have any intention of changing personnel in the Bangladesh team [in any format] right now," Hassan said.
"But the issue is that he has not been amongst runs lately. Not getting runs can hurt any player. Moreover, he is our captain so think how bad he must be feeling? We feel like he is going through a mental crisis."
Mominul has produced single-digit scores in his last seven Test innings. However, Hassan said that the cricketer will be getting all the help he needs to turn his form around.
"I sat with Mominul and the coach after the game [the second Test against Sri Lanka that ended last Friday] that day. Neither I nor the team management is concerned about Mominul's captaincy. But the issue is that he has not been amongst runs lately. Not getting runs can hurt any player. Moreover, he is our captain so think how bad he must be feeling? We feel like he is going through a mental crisis.
"After the meeting that day, I said to Mominul, 'Mominul, please improve your batting. I have full confidence in you that you can do it. You are the batter with most centuries [in Tests] for Bangladesh. You have scored 11 tons. Age is also by your side and it is not that you have any physical issues currently. So, please let me know what can we do for you,'" Hassan added.
Hassan, who returned to the country yesterday night after attending the IPL final in Ahmedabad, said he will only make any decision after a meeting with Mominul. It was learned that the cricketer is on his way to discuss the issue with the BCB president today.
Hassan also mentioned that the issue of Mominul's captaincy is not even on the agenda for the upcoming board meeting, slated for June 2. But the BCB boss said that it could be discussed if anyone at the meeting raises the issue.
"We have a board meeting on June 2. If anyone raises this issue on that day, then we can discuss it and come to a decision. We can not say or take any decision out of the blue. It is not that we have already had something decided. So, we have not taken any decision regarding Mominul's captaincy. But what we do want is for Mominul to let us know what he wants to do so that he can concentrate more on his batting and get back to the rhythm," Hassan said.
"I like the fact that Shakib is a straightforward guy. I know what he wants. The only thing that I don't know is when he will call and say, 'I won't play'. The only problem with Shakib is that he says at the last moment that he won't be a part of a tour or a series. But if he is to become the next Test captain, he can not do any such thing. There is no other problem with Shakib,"
Hassan also has his reservations about Shakib being tipped as the potential replacement of Mominul as the Tigers' Test skipper.
"I heard about it yesterday [that Shakib is being tipped as the next Test captain]. Shakib was always in all the formats for Bangladesh. But before reaching a decision [of making Shakib the Test captain], I at least need to know whether Shakib will play or not. If he becomes captain then he can not pick and choose [between series and tours]. First, we need to know what Shakib's plan is.
"I like the fact that Shakib is a straightforward guy. I know what he wants. The only thing that I don't know is when he will call and say, 'I won't play'. The only problem with Shakib is that he says at the last moment that he won't be a part of a tour or a series. But if he is to become the next Test captain, he can not do any such thing. There is no other problem with Shakib," Hassan added.