Press Trust of india

Tamim takes back resignation after being ‘admonished’ by Bangladesh PM

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Chattogram (Bangladesh):  A day after announcing his retirement from international cricket, Tamim Iqbal announced his return to the national side after being “admonished” by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

The 34-year-old Tamim, who was leading the side against Afghanistan in a three-match ODI series, had made the retirement announcement a day after Bangladesh lost the opening game here on Wednesday.

“Today afternoon (Friday), the Prime Minister invited me to her house. She admonished me and asked me to play again, so I have decided to come out of retirement at this moment,” Tamim was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.

“I can say no to everyone but it was impossible for me to say no to someone of the PM’s authority. (Bangladesh Cricket Board president) Papon (Nazmul Hasan) bhai, Mashrafe (Mortaza) bhai were big, big factors too. Mashrafe bhai called me here and Papon bhai was also with here. Prime Minister also gave me one-and-a-half months break for my treatment and other things. After becoming mentally free, I will play the rest of the matches.”

A hard hitter of the ball, Iqbal has played 70 Tests amassing 5,134 runs including 10 centuries and a double ton in his 16-year career.

It was in the ODIs that his true potential was realised as a top-order batter, where the stalwart has amassed 8,313 runs in 241 games including 14 centuries — the most for his country.

He is also the third-highest run-scorer among current cricketers, behind Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma.

Iqbal’s retirement had come as a surprise for Bangladesh just three months before the 2023 ODI World Cup in India.

“I assumed that he took the decision emotionally,” BCB president Nazmul said. “Of course it’s a matter of big relief (that he has taken back the retirement). If we don’t have captain, how can we play? I knew that if I could sit with him and talk, I could convince him. Today, we were called on by the Prime Minister. Tamim said he would withdraw his retirement letter. But he has taken one-and-a-half months leave for regaining his physical and mental fitness.”

The cricketer had made his international debut in 2007 amassing 15,000 runs in international cricket, including 25 centuries and 94 half-centuries.

Iqbal had quit T20I cricket last year and played his last Test against Ireland in April.


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