Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Bangladesh batsman Aftab Ahmed has announced that he will retire from all forms of cricket following the conclusion of the 2014-15 season.
Ahmed will represent the Brothers Union in the upcoming edition of the Dhaka Premier League after switching over from Gazi Tank Cricketers on the first day of the player transfer window.
Despite only being 29, Ahmed noted that he decided to retire due to his ailing international career. Last season, Ahmed averaged 23.81 while playing for the Gazi Tank Cricketers in the Dhaka Premier League and 18.20 in three first-class matches.
“This is my last Premier League, I don’t wish to play any longer,” Aftab said. “It wasn’t based on any emotional factors. It is completely a personal decision. This is my last year. You all please pray that I can leave on a high.
“Cricket has become tough. Club officials think in a different way. I got a very low offer this year. So by putting everything into consideration, I thought this is the right time. If I had taken a bit longer, it wouldn’t be good for me. This is how I came to this decision.”
Ahmed is renowned for the hitting a six off former Australia pace bowler Jason Gillespie in the last over to hand his country a stunning victory over the Baggy Greens in Cardiff in June 2005.
But, his entire international career started to fall apart when he decided to play in the Indian Cricket League (ICL). As a result, the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) turned their backs on him.
“The start of my career doesn’t really reflect what I eventually became as a player,” he said. “The ICL had a profound effect on my career at a crucial time. I mean, I couldn’t really end my career as I would have wanted. Still, I think people loved me for the way I played the game.”
Ahmed is now focusing his attention on opening a cricket academy in his hometown of Chittagong since the city struggles to produce cricketers who go on to play in the national team.
“I am setting up a cricket academy in Chittagong, which will be opened in the near future,” he said. “I want to take my coaching career to a very good level. Currently cricket in Chittagong is in bad shape, so I wish to take it to a better place.”