It’s time the focus was shifted back to cricket, says Mushfiqur Rahim

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

Rahim called on the media to divert their attention towards Bangladesh’s upcoming home series against New Zealand

For the past few weeks, all the news revolving around the Bangladesh team has been about Mohammad Ashraful and the match-fixing scandal that took place in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).

However, captain Mushfiqur Rahim is sick and tired of the media swarming around the story and trying to blow it out of proportion.

Rahim pleaded with the media to stop focusing on a dark chapter in Bangladesh cricket and instead divert their attention towards the national team’s upcoming home series against New Zealand in October.

“It is distracting our attention,” Rahim said. “But we are trying to concentrate on New Zealand who did well against England recently, a great achievement. I hope the problems [regarding the BPL controversy] will be sorted out soon. The good environment that we had should return.

“It is always difficult to keep the concentration. Everyone knows it is a mental game. So you have to keep yourself focused to keep your concentration. The 12 players who are here are trying to do that. Those who are outside are also trying to do that.”

With the match-fixing scandal having severely damaged the reputation of the BPL, Rahim noted that he would like the tournament to continue as it allows players from all different backgrounds and cultures to play alongside and against each other.

“Apart from the fixing and the payment, the standard of cricket in the BPL was good and a lot of individuals were helped by it,” Rahim added. “We always want that the BPL should continue. But as we give 100%, the involved parties should also give 100%.

“Only then it should be played, otherwise it’s a waste of time. A lot of players got injured playing in the BPL. That indicates they are trying to give their 100%.”

Speaking about Ashraful, Rahim stated that the International Cricket Council (ICC) should make an example of him, but at the same time try and be lenient in some way since he did admit to his crimes and plead forgiveness.

“I was shocked, but the guilty should be taken to task,” Rahim said. “There is the ICC and the BCB to do that. From the age-level players to everyone [involved in cricket], this should be a lesson.

“If one of your colleagues is engaged with this sort of thing, it will hurt you. At the same time, it is not the first time in cricket. There were big names that were involved in it. But it is painful because it has happened in our country for the first time. But this should finish quickly and a normal atmosphere should return.”

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