Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan Backflips on South Africa Tour

Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan will be considered for this month’s South Africa series after all, selectors said Saturday, days after the all-rounder claimed he was not in the right headspace for cricket.

Shakib has struggled with poor performance and made just 60 runs and five wickets in the three-match ODI series against Afghanistan that finished last week.

He told the Bangladesh Cricket Board that he was “mentally fatigued and physically stressed” and withdrew himself from contention for the South Africa tour after being named to the squad.

But Shakib had a change of heart three days after he was rested from all formats until April 30, following a meeting with board president Nazmul Hassan in Dhaka.

“Shakib is available for all the formats for the South Africa tour. He will travel to South Africa tomorrow,” Nazmul told reporters after the meeting.

The 34-year-old had been criticised by commentators following his sudden withdrawal, but Nazmul urged fans to show consideration to the national side.

“We have to remember that the senior players go through tremendous pressure,” he said.

“We have to play 14 ODIs, 15 T20Is this year, and we have to play eight Tests as well. It’s tough for our senior players to play all these matches. We have to understand it,” he added.

Shakib told reporters that he had finalised a plan for him to compete over the next year, with the board to decide when he should be rested.

The series against South Africa will start with the first ODI on March 18 at Centurion.

Durban and Port Elizabeth will also host one Test match each.

Members of the Bangladesh ODI squad have already departed for the series.

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