Neither player approached for contracts August 1, 2007

Bashar, Mahmud express interest in Indian Cricket League

Cricinfo staff

Habibul Bashar is not averse to joining the ICL if it does not clash with his commitments to the Bangladesh national side © AFP

Former Bangladesh captains Habibul Bashar and Khaled Mahmud have expressed interest in participating in the Indian Cricket League (ICL) if they are offered contracts approved by the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB).

"I have a contract with the BCB and I want to honour it," Bashar told the New Age, a Dhaka-based daily. "If the ICL offer does not clash with it, I will definitely play. I think I am fit enough to compete at the highest level and I will play at least three more years."

However, Bashar - who has a contract with the BCB till October - said he had not got any offer to play in the ICL. He was replaced as the Bangladesh captain by Mohammad Ashraful for Bangladesh's tour of Sri Lanka and has not been picked for the Twenty20 World Championship in South Africa this September.

Mahmud, who retired from international cricket in February last year but continues to play in the domestic league, said: "Realistically, I don't expect any offer from any ICL team. But if there is any and the BCB permits me, yes, I can play." Mahmud had been manager of the Bangladesh side during the Champions Trophy last year.

When Mohammad Rafique, the left-arm spinner, was asked whether there was any possibility of his joining the ICL, he said, "Let them offer me [a contract], then I will think about it."

The ICL is a Twenty20 tournament proposed to be held in India around October. It plans to feature six teams, each including four international players and two Indian stars.