Drama ensued during a Bangladesh Premier League match between Rangpur Riders and Fortune Barishal when Shakib Al Hasan stepped on to the ground and got embroiled in an argument with the umpires.
The first innings of the match had passed without much fuss at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur after Shakib won the toss and put Rangpur in. Opening the bowling, Shakib had Mohammad Naim caught behind first ball and finished with 4-0-19-1.
With Mehidy Hasan Miraz also chipping in with 4-0-21-2, Barishal restricted Rangpur to 158-7 despite Rony Talukdar’s 28-ball 40 and Shoaib Malik’s 36-ball 54 not out.
Rangpur then took field, along with Barishal openers Chaturanga de Silva (whose brother Wanindu Hasaranga is playing against India today) and wicketkeeper Anamul Haque, and umpires Gazi Sohel and Raveendra Wimalsiri.
However, before play commenced, Shakib was spotted standing outside the boundary line making animated gestures at his openers. “I really don’t know what’s going on here,” admitted Athar Ali Khan on air, though he had a guess. Upon noticing that left-handed Anamul was about to take strike against left-arm spinner Rakibul Hasan, Shakib insisted that the left-handed de Silva took strike instead.
When that did not happen, Shakib jogged on to the field in slippers to discuss the matter with the umpires amidst loud cheer. On air, a confused Curtly Ambrose requested local man Athar for an explanation – but “I’m as clueless as you are” was all Athar could respond.
“It’s all confusing…” uttered an exasperated Ambrose as Shakib went on to have an animated conversation with the umpires. Rangpur captain Nurul Hasan joined in as well.
“I can’t recall ever seen this in cricket before,” confessed Ambrose, who had more than his fair share of controversies in his playing days. “Neither have I,” responded Athar.
Two days ago, Shakib had been involved in another controversy when he questioned the decision of an umpire not calling a wide.
De Silva eventually took strike, but Rakibul took him out with his fourth ball. Barishal became 15-2 before Ibrahim Zadran (52 in 41 balls) and Mehidy (43 in 29) added 88. Iftikhar Ahmed and Karim Janat then won the match with four balls to spare.