BCB reduces Shakib suspension
The Bangladesh Cricket Board has reduced Shakib Al Hasan's six-month suspension by three-and-a-half months, allowing him to be available for selection from September 15. However, the BCB's ban on No Objection Certificates, required for Shakib to participate in overseas leagues, will remain in place until the end of 2015.
The reduction in his suspension means that Shakib will be available for selection for the home series against Zimbabwe. He will not join the team in the West Indies, however, as the final Test of the tour begins on September 13 in St Lucia.
Shakib was suspended on July 7 for what the board considered "serious misbehaviour" with Bangladesh's new coach, Chandika Hathurusingha, and for his altercation with a spectator during a recent ODI against India.
He appealed two weeks later and apologised publicly after submitting a letter to the board. At the start of August, Shakib was allowed to train at the Shere Bangla National Stadium. Nazmul Hassan, the BCB president, said the board had taken the decision to reduce the suspension after it was satisfied by the allrounder's recent behaviour.
"After taking everything under consideration, we have decided in today's meeting that his suspension will be lifted on September 15," Hassan said, after a four hour-long meeting at the board headquarters. "This means he will be available for selection. The board would not decide where he will play, the selectors and operations committee are there to select him. He will be available for international and domestic cricket.
"It is not easy to take such a decision and then come out of it. But, as a contracted player, he had a right to appeal and he did. We were satisfied with the letter and his recent behaviour from individual interactions. We feel he has learned from his mistake and he has assured us a number of times that he won't make such a mistake again."
Hassan also said the board could consider lifting the ban on NOCs if Shakib's behaviour improves on and off the field.
"The decision to keep him suspended from playing abroad [in domestic leagues] still stands," Hassan said. "We will observe him on and off the field. If we see he has improved, the board may then decide to relax the other things."
Hassan also said that Shakib would be in the player pool for the Dhaka Premier League 2014-15 but stated the details would also rest with the tournament organisers, CCDM.
"He is a [national] pool player. There are a few decisions to be taken, which will be in CCDM's authority. They will let us know. They will take legal advice, but he will be allowed to play," he said.
When asked if the decision to reduce Shakib's suspension was due to Bangladesh's recent performances, Hassan simply said: "No."
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84