Will the Tamim issue alter Bangladesh's World Cup squad?
With just a week remaining to the start of the ICC World Cup, Bangladesh remain one of only two teams yet to name their squad, even as the team is set to depart for India tomorrow.
A source inside the BCB, on condition of anonymity, said the team might be announced during the innings break of the third ODI against New Zealand today.
With most teams having announced their 15-member squads long before the final cut-off date (September 27), Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are still making last-minute calculations over the contingent for the month-and-a-half long event. And given the events this morning, settling on a final 15 may just have gotten harder for Bangladesh.
While Sri Lanka's delay is purely due to injuries and recovery to key players such as Wanindu Hasaranga, Bangladesh are apparently still unsure of the team combination, thanks to a lack of form of a number of players as well as debate over whether the team should rely on experience rather than adding young blood.
But this morning's revelations that skipper Shakib Al Hasan was unwilling to continue in the role because he did not want to take half-fit players to the 10-team event in India has created even greater uncertainty.
Unverified news spread last night that former skipper Tamim Iqbal told the team management that he might not be fit enough to play all nine matches in India.
Also last night, BCB president Nazmul Hassan Papon called for a late night meeting with captain Shakib and coach Chandika Hathurusingha, who had returned from Australia a few hours ago.
The outcome of the meeting could not be ascertained as none of the three spoke to media.
Before all hell started breaking loose in Bangladesh cricket, it was thought that the squad would feature five seamers -- including youngster Tanzim Hasan Sakib -- alongside four spinners, two of whom are all-rounders, and two wicketkeeper-batters. Veteran Mahmudullah Riyad is all set to be in the squad, which will leave spots for only two specialist openers in Tamim and Liton Das, while all-rounder Mehedi Hasan Miraz is being considered as an option for a backup opening batter, thereby leaving no place for young Tanzid Hasan Tamim or anyone else in that position.
Whether or not the already-chosen 15 remain the same, the Tamim and Shakib issue will certainly unsettle a team already struggling for form and confidence.