We are not playing WTC final: Shakib Al Hasan

Star all-rounder Shakib-al- Hasan has claimed that the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has “misrepresented” his decision to play in the IPL at the expense of representing the national team in a Test series against Sri Lanka.

With Bangladesh not in contention in the World Test Championship, Shakib said it was more meaningful to compete in the IPL, as that would help him prepare better for the next T20 World Cup, which will be held in India later this year.

“These two Tests are our last matches in the World Test Championship so it is not as if we are going to play the final,” Shakib told Cricfrenzy. “We are at the very bottom of the points table. I don’t think it makes much of a difference.

“The other major reason is that the World Cup T20 is in India later this year. It is a very important tournament where we have much to achieve. There isn’t much to achieve in these two Tests. I think it is a better option that I prepare myself for something bigger.”

Shakib said in his letter to the BCB, that he mentioned about his plans to prepare himself better for the T20 World Cup.

“People are continuously talking about this (skipping the Test series against Sri Lanka). Those who are saying that I will no longer play Test cricket haven’t read my letter properly.

“I did not mention anywhere in my letter that I do not want to play Tests. I mentioned in my letter that I want to play in the IPL to prepare myself properly for World Cup but despite that Akram Bhai (BCB cricket operation chairman) has repeatedly said that I do not want to play Tests,” he said.

With the T20 World Cup slated for October, Shakib said there are many advantages of playing in the IPL this time. “The ground where I will play IPL now will be the ground where I will play the World Cup match after four months. The players with whom I will play the IPL will be the players against whom I will play in the World Cup.

“For this reason, I will get more advantages than anyone else from Bangladesh, and it will also help me to share my experiences with the team that I will gain by playing in the IPL,” he said.

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