After a two-month shutdown enforced to contain the spread of coronavirus, the government announced on Wednesday that the country will reopen on May 31 to keep the economy rolling. Major national sports federations want to follow the instructions to open their respective offices but also want to observe the situation before resuming sporting activities.
The federations have kept sporting activity suspended since the youth and sports ministry on March 16 instructed all sports to be halted for an indefinite period. The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) and Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) suspended its Dhaka Premier League and Bangladesh Premier League respectively, and other federations also kept their activities suspended for nearly twoand a half months.
"We are now thinking of carrying out activities on a limited scale but we haven't yet decided when to restart. We will work on a priority basis, such as the Dhaka Premier League, FTP and some official tasks. However, the authority concerned will take the decision to resume the league and about international commitments," said BCB chief executive officer Nizamuddin Chowdhury.
BFF general secretary Abu Nayeem Shohag said: "We will now open the office on May 31 but we will ensure reduced attendance of employees after a few days because we don't have big tasks after the cancellation of the Bangladesh Premier League.
"Afterwards, we will start the process of the BFF elections, which was suspended due to the pandemic and shutdown. BFF executive committee will take a decision regarding this. We are also thinking of resuming the Women's Football League, National Football Championship and School tournament in suitable circumstances," said Shohag.
Echoing Shohag'ssentiment regarding reopening their office, Bangladesh Hockey Federation acting general secretary Mohammad Yousuf said: "To resume sports activities, we will observe the situation and wait for the instructions from the National Sports Council and youth and sports ministry. We however want to sit with the clubs to discuss about the Dhaka Premier Hockey League as we sent them letters before the shutdown was enforced. FIH [International Hockey Federation] also wanted to know about the international tournaments scheduled to take place in Bangladesh. We will discuss all matters and follow the government guidelines at the board meeting before taking any decision."
Bangladesh Archery Federation general secretary Kazi Razib Ahmed Uddin Chapal said: "We are now working out how to restart activities. We have to accept the decision of the government for but the athletes are like our children and we have to look after their health. If the athletes' parents, organisations and sponsors give us their nod, then we will start the training of the national team in a small scale. We will observe the situation till June 15 before holding the executive committee meeting."
Bangladesh Volleyball Federation general secretary Ashikur Rahman Miku said: "We first want to observe the situation. If there is nominal opportunity to restart games, we will start it by maintaining health guidelines."
Bangladesh Handball Federation general secretary Asaduzzaman Kohinoor said they wanted to start training camps and that they are thinking of resumption of play by organising tournaments in late June or early July.