What’s the story?
Bangladesh’s T20 captain, Mashrafe Mortaza has announced his retirement from the shortest format of the game. The 33-year-old announced his decision at the toss before the first T20 between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
“This is going to be my last T20 series for Bangladesh," said Mashrafe. "I would like to thank BCB, my family and friends, team-mates and coaching staff. I would also like to thank my fans who really supported me in the last 15-16 years."
In case you didn’t know...
Mortaza captained Bangladesh in 26 matches, winning nine of those. He picked up 39 wickets at 37.56 including one four-wicket haul against Ireland. He was also quite handy with the willow in hand, striking at 135.79 in his 37 innings.
Mortaza top-scored in Bangladesh’s first ever T20 encounter way back in 2006.
The heart of the matter
The 33-year-old conveyed his decision to the senior players in the squad following which he announced it to his teammates. His decision does not come as a surprise as, following Bangladesh’s 3-0 defeat to New Zealand in a T20 series earlier in the year, the Bangladeshi board were reported to be considering introducing fresh blood into the squad and handing over captaincy duties to Shakib Al Hasan.
Mortaza will remain the skipper of the ODI team and will lead his side in a tri-series involving New Zealand and Ireland later this year. He will then take his troops to England for the Champions Trophy in June.
The decision to retire from T20s is the right one considering the Tigers’ recent results – they have lost their last seven games – in the format. Mortaza’s retirement will probably mean that Shakib will be handed the captaincy armband.