Bangladesh’s talismanic ODI captain, Mashrafe Mortaza’s reaction to a question during a recent interaction with a local reporter, is hogging all limelight since Saturday.
The 36-year-old, who last featured in the group stage encounter against Bangladesh in the World Cup in England last year, is included in the plans for the upcoming ODI series against Zimbabwe.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) Chief Nazmul Hasan already directed that this could be the last time in Bangla colors for Mortaza.
One of the reporters bluntly asked whether the veteran fast bowler was ashamed of his performances during the World Cup last year, where he ended up with eight wickets.
“Why will I be ashamed? Am I a thief? Do I steal on the ground? I actually can not relate things like ‘self-respect’ or ‘being ashamed’ with playing cricket,” Mortaza struck back at the reporter.
Mortaza received a substantial amount of flak for not being able to pick up wickets with the new ball. Bangladesh held the worst record of strike-rates with the ball, during the powerplays of the World Cup.
“There are people who steal and cheat; aren’t they ashamed of what they are doing? Only I have to feel ashamed if I do not get wickets in a game? Am I a thief?” continued the ODI captain.
Despite numerous career-threatening injuries plaguing his career, Mortaza holds a reputation for making a comeback and delivering it for the country in his 18-year long career.
“I might not get wickets and then all of your personnel and also my fans can criticize and talk about it. But why would I have to be ashamed of it? Am I not playing for Bangladesh? Or am I playing for any other country that I must be ashamed of my performance? If I can not perform then they can drop me — it is that simple,” concluded Mortaza.