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Hathurusingha breached code of conduct - Naimur Rahman

Coach Chandika Hathurusingha and captain Mashrafe Mortaza interact with the press AFP

BCB's cricket operations committee chairman Naimur Rahman has said coach Chandika Hathurusingha has breached the code of conduct by commenting on team selection. The matter was reportedly discussed in Sunday's board meeting.

When asked if the BCB had given Hathurusingha a letter of caution, BCB CEO Nizamuddin Chowdhury said he would not comment on such an "internal" matter.

Hathurusingha made the comments a few days after Bangladesh's exit from the World Cup. He told reporters it was not the best squad and he wasn't happy with the selection, as it affected the team combination. He had, in fact, voiced his displeasure with the squad soon after it was announced in January and was critical of the omission of rookie legspinner Jubair Hossain.

Naimur, Bangladesh's first Test captain and a BCB director, said the selectors must be allowed to do their job and that siding with a particular player could lead to a negative mentality within the dressing room.

"It is his [Hathurusingha] personal opinion," said Naimur. "It is immaturity. No coach should be speaking like this. No coach should talk so openly about a player or talk against someone in this way. It is not healthy. He is not authorised to talk against anyone. The comments breach the code of conduct. When the selection committee submits the team, the cricket operations committee chairman recommends the team and it is approved by the board president. So these comments about selection go against board and board president, clearly.

"One must let the selectors do their work. They usually take the coach's opinion. But it doesn't have to match all the time. But one shouldn't comment in this way. Everyone should maintain their protocol and their working area. It negatively affects the players too. One player will see that the coach is so blind about me. Another will feel that the coach is neglecting me in the team and not willing to take me. I want to get rid of these things."

Naimur, who is head of the cricket operations department that Hathurusingha reports to, said the coach was focusing more on his personal contribution than the team's performance.

"More than underestimating the team, I think he was more focused on highlighting his personal credit that 'I am a very successful coach'. His interview suggests that if the team was selected by his choice, Bangladesh would have played in the final, even won the trophy. I haven't spoken to him after the interview. He went on holiday after the World Cup," said Naimur.

Hathurusingha also discussed the possibility of having a role in selection in the future, citing the examples of Australia and New Zealand where the coaches are also part of the selection committee. He said since the coach's job description required preparing the team to win matches, it would be essential for the coach to be part of the selection process. Currently the BCB employs three full-time selectors who pick the squads, while the team management decides the playing XI.

Naimur said the coach never brought up the matter with him or the BCB. He also advised Hathurusingha to maintain the right protocol. "If the coach wants to be part of selection, he has to tell me or the board. It won't work telling the media. But he hasn't told us. We are not thinking about it now.

"After I took over the position [of chairman of cricket operations committee], I told him that you have to speak to me about my committee. You won't get a result by speaking to the chairman of another committee. I will take his request to the BCB president. It is better to follow the chain of command so that we can all work properly," said Naimur.