There is nothing to motivate, Mustafizur Rahman's choice to prioritize white-ball cricket should be respected, says Shakib Al Hasan

Mustafizur has been reluctant to play the longest format since the West Indies series in 2021.

Mustafizur Rahman
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Mustafizur Rahman. (Photo by Action Foto Sport/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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Bangladesh’s reappointed Test captain Shakib-al-Hasan felt that Mustafizur Rahman’s preference in the long term should be considered and instead should not be forced into playing Test cricket. The left-arm seamer has been reluctant to play the longest format since the West Indies series in 2021 in order to have a long international career, however, he was added to the Bangladesh squad for the two-match Test series in West Indies which starts today (June 16).

According to Cricbuzz reports, the Bangladesh Cricket Board had sent Mustafizur a letter to clarify his position and the seamer had agreed to play the two Tests. Mustafizur, being a limited-overs specialist has a big role to play in the Bangladesh side and he has played 14 Tests so far picking up 30 wickets at an average of 36.7. Despite the average numbers, the 26-year-old has been seen as a special talent and given his experience, he can lead the bowling attack as well.

However, Mustafizur has been quite wary of the injuries associated with a long Test career and he had faced quite a number in his short international career so far. While many experts have criticised him for not taking Test cricket seriously, skipper Shakib did come out and show some support for the left-arm seamer.

I am sure Muztafizur Rahman is motivated to play these two matches: Shakib Al Hasan

Shakib-al-Hasan felt that motivation for Test cricket should not come by forcing an individual and noted that Mustafizur’s preference for limited-overs cricket should be respected. He was confident about the fact that Mustafizur is motivated about the upcoming Tests against West Indies but denied any assurance on a long-term basis.

“There is nothing to motivate. Because if Mustafizur prefers, that he wants to play one-day or T20 then I think we should respect that,” Shakib said on the eve of the first Test as quoted by India Today.

“As he is in the series and I am sure he is motivated to play these two matches and that is important for us. As a captain I am focused with these two matches and he looked very motivated to play these two matches. But in the long term I am not sure what is in store and whether he wants to play Test or not but I think every player has individual preferences and choices and there is something like comfort zone and we must respect that,” he added.