“I told his brother Nafees that he should at least captain the side in this series,” Hassan said. “We will discuss things after the series. Then I said that a legendary cricketer shouldn’t take such a decision. He is an important member of the side. Nafees said that he conveyed the message, but there was no reply. I have to wait for his response, I am hopeful that he will contact me.
“We need him in the ODI side. I will wait for him to change the decision. I will still say that we need him in the Asia Cup and World Cup teams. We will wait for him. I didn’t expect such a decision from him. He told me that he wanted to play till the 2025 Champions Trophy. We made him the captain. We cannot think about it differently. We didn’t have a reason to think differently.”
“I will say it every time something like this happens – he passed the fitness test, so why did he tell the media that he is not totally fit? If he wasn’t fit, then how did he pass the fitness test? If he had a problem, he would tell me or the physio,” Hassan said. “What was the purpose to suddenly say it in the media? This is not how international cricket is played. We will not tolerate this.
“I don’t accept his retirement announcement. He is the captain, we have the Asia Cup and World Cup ahead of us. It is not a wise decision. It seems he has been thinking about it for a long time. It is not taken spontaneously. It is not a proper decision.”
“It is a shocking thing for me. I don’t know why he [Tamim] did this. I speak to cricketers regularly but if they behave like this, I have to stop this culture.”
“Why bid farewell after just 34 years and 108 days? Was it not possible for you to carry on? Did some kind of pressure force you to take this decision? Many of your fans may seek answers to these questions today and for many days in the future”
Mashrafe Mortaza to Tamim Iqbal in a Facebook post
Mashrafe, however, backed Tamim’s decision, but wondered why Tamim had to take the decision so early.
“Personally, I have 100% respect for your [Tamim’s] decision,” Mashrafe wrote in a Facebook post. “Tamim, your decision is definitely yours alone. It doesn’t matter whether someone likes it or not. There will be arguments from both sides. But no one will understand better than you what is best for you.
“But I want to know something: why bid farewell after just 34 years and 108 days? Was it not possible for you to carry on? Did some kind of pressure force you to take this decision? Many of your fans may seek answers to these questions today and for many days in the future.”
Mashrafe reminisced about meeting Tamim for the first time, and then developing a friendship with him after they became colleagues in the national team.
“I first saw you at your house in Chattogram, wearing shorts. Your brother, my friend Nafees Iqbal, introduced you to me. I saw you the next time in the National Cricket League in Khulna. Then, from the 2007 [ODI] World Cup, we became friends while traveling together,” Mashrafe wrote. “How many days and nights were spent together, eating out together, chatting for hours; all that mischief, fun, discussions and arguments about games, there is no way to keep track of those.”
Mashrafe also alluded to Tamim’s ability to analyse matches well, and wondered who would take up that mantle in the Bangladesh team.
“When I was the captain of the Bangladesh cricket team, you were one of my ‘snipers’. You yourself know that very well. The day I left the team, you took me on your shoulders… Many memories are now coming to my mind,” Mashrafe wrote. “Knowing you, I could have easily done a post-mortem about your decision. But I won’t do that, because we must respect your decision.
“One more thing: I don’t know who will do analysis-based discussions on various statistics within the team camp. Maybe someone will. But you will always be the best of the best in that.”