Was Shakib consulted on squad selection?
Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan and the new selection panel, led by former captain Akram Khan, have had a public disagreement over the squad for the Zimbabwe tour starting later this month. Shakib said he was not consulted before the 15-man squad was picked, while Akram insisted he was.
"I learned about the team after it was named," Shakib said. "I felt that [I should've been consulted] but they, who selected, should have felt it too."
Akram, however, expressed his disbelief at Shakib's comments and insisted that he had spoken to Shakib over the phone in England. "I'm really shocked," Akram said. "It's really hard for me to believe that Shakib made such comments."
Akram, who became selection chief in April, said that he discussed the squad with Shakib before finalising it. "I personally talked with him over telephone in front of my colleagues [Minhazul Abedin and Habibul Bashar] to take his view over the selection. I mentioned all the names for his opinions and he said it is okay." During a two-day practice game at the GP-BCB National Cricket Academy ground last week, Akram had informed reporters present that he held talks with Shakib over the team.
When Shakib was further pressed for his opinion on the current 15-member squad, he said, "The people who selected the team can tell better how good the team is. But I will lead out my eleven." The reason for Shakib's resentment is unknown as he refrained from expanding.
Mohammad Isam is senior sports reporter at the Daily Star in Dhaka