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20 October, 2019 00:00 00 AM

Better for aged cricketers to take up coaching

BCB ready to help them to develop youngsters
Md Abu Talha Sarker, Dhaka
Better for aged cricketers to take up coaching

Not long ago they would play for the national team and showcase their scintillating skill with the bat and the ball. But now that they have reached thirty, they should end their cricket career and take up coaching as a profession or be part of team management. The once the national team players, Faisal Hossain Decans, Talha Jubair, Aftab Ahmed, Saiful Islam and Rajin Saleh are now cricket coaches, while Hannan Sarker, Hasibul Hossain Shanto, Mehrab Hossain Opee, Ehsanul Haque Sheezan, Sajjad Ahmed Shipon are now age-group selectors.

 Recently, Khaled Mashud Pilot and Javed Omar joined the BCB stint after Athar Ali returned to his commentary profession.  Former captains Minhajul Abedin Nannu and Habibul Bashar Sumon are currently on the BCB selection panel.  The 21st edition of the National Cricket League (NCL) has started in which Talha Jubair, Aftab Ahmed and Rajin Saleh are playing the role of the head coaches in three different divisions.

Talha supervised the Dhaka Metro, Aftab guided Chattogram and Rajin Saleh oversaw the Sylhet Division.  Their contemporary Tushar Imran, Mohammad Ashraful, Mohammad Sharif and Abdur Razzak are still playing domestic cricket. This time, they have prepared themselves with the young players and took part in the beep test, though none of them met the required mark of eleven in the fitness test, the benchmark set by the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) for the NCL.

 So, the question has come to the fore from all fronts about these players’ acceptability and necessity in the longer version cricket, when the BCB has to think about producing potential and quality players for Test cricket ahead of the World Test Championship, organised by the International Cricket Council (ICC).

 Cricket experts say they should drop their cricketing career to take to coaching as a profession. Not only conscious cricket fans, but also the patrons and groomers of the national team, High Performance and age-group team such as Akram Khan, Khaled Mahmud Sujon and Naimur Rahman Durjoy, too, echoed the sentiment.

 The point they are making is that they can’t tell any player to drop his cricket. They have no authority to force them to do that. Even the board has no such power to slap any ban on them to stop them from playing cricket.

But the board would cooperate with them if they want to stop playing to become coaches, to be part of the team management, trainer, or computer analyst.

 “We can’t tell any player to drop out of domestic cricket, especially the National Cricket League (NCL) and Bangladesh Cricket League (BCL). But it is right for those who have stepped into their mid-thirties to become professional coaches,” said Akram Khan, who is a director in the BCB and its Cricket Operations Committee Chairman.

 Akram did not name any player but said if they joined the coaching profession and shared their practical knowledge and ideas with young players, cricket would benefit.

 “Those who have played for the national team have experience of playing international cricket. They know the temperament, style and motives of Tests and ODIs. If they come in the coaching profession, they could share their practical knowledge and ideas with the young players,” he told The Independent.

 “The next generation cricketers will get a clear idea of international cricket at the age-group teams and High Performance (HP) team before breaking into the national team. In this way, their career will also be developed,” he added.

Khaled Mahmud Sujon said those who reached 35 or more had their individual assessment and conscience to tell them what they should do.

 “It’s not possible for them to play Test any longer. They have to understand that. If they take up coaching as a profession, get involved in training and team management as much as possible, it’ll be an intelligent thing to do. They could be involved in cricketing activities in future,” said Khaled Mahmud Sujon, who is a director in BCB and its Games Development Committee Chairman.

 “I always believe those who played for the national team have rich experience. It would be better if they get involved in team management and coaching, dropping their cricket career,” Sujon told The Independent.

 “Even though I didn’t hold directly talks about this matter with Ashraful, Razzak and Sharif or Tushar Imran, but it’s true that if they want to do coaching dropping their games, the board will stay with them,” he added.

 “Now their willingness is the biggest thing here, I think. If they choose to continue their cricket, we’ll not force them to stop playing. They have to understand when they have to stop and what they can do.”

 “I can say that many former players have been interested in coaching after dropping their cricket. We’ve given an opportunity to some of them. They are now at the age-level, divisional level and club level.”

Naming some former players, Sujon said they were in coaching jobs in senior and junior level cricket, while some were in team management in the BCB.

“Today Sajjad Ahmed Shipon is a junior selector along with Hannan Sarker, Hasibul Hossain Shanto, Ehsanul Haque Sheezan. Mehrab Hossain Opee, Faisal Hossain Decans, and Saiful Islam have been involved in the age-group cricket team,” Khaled said.

“Talha, Aftab and Rajin will be coaching in the big tournament like the national cricket league. And now if Ashraful, Tushar, Razzak and Sharif follow, we’ll give them the chance of coaching if they want. We’ll cooperate them to complete their level-2 course,” he added.

Both Akram and Sujon want those who had excelled for the national team with the bat and the ball to come forward and build the next generation of cricketers.

Mohammad Sharif among them told the media this NCL will be his swansong. He wants to start coaching from next year what he decided.

Before that, Sharif, of course, wants to complete a record as he stands on the brink of a domestic record of 400 wickets and needs just seven wickets to reach the milestone in first-class cricket.



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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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