Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal have been axed as Bangladesh captain and vice-captain respectively following the side's dismal performance on the recent tour of Zimbabwe.
"We thought they could improve their behaviour, but now we didn't have any choice but to go into a hardline," BCB media chairman Jalal Yunus said in a short press conference. "After we got our reports from the different people on tour, we got to this decision." Neither Shakib nor Tamim could be reached for comments.
Bangladesh were expected to prevail against Zimbabwe, who were making their Test return after five years out of the format, but slid to an embarrassing 130-run loss in the only Test in Harare. The defeat came after Tamim claimed that Zimbabwe's opening bowlers, Kyle Jarvis and Brian Vitori, were ordinary. Vitori and Jarvis chipped in with four-wicket hauls as Zimbabwe completed victory.
Bangladesh's misery continued in the five-match ODI series that followed, as they went down 0-3 before winning the dead rubbers. The BCB reacted to the loss by launching a probe to evaluate the team's performance.
Monday's announcement ended Shakib's eventful but troubled time in charge of the side. Despite being one of Bangladesh's best players, and among the top-ranked allrounders in the game, Shakib's off-field actions seemed to adversely affect his relationship with the BCB.
When he was asked to take over as captain "permanently but on a series-to-series basis", Shakib refused, a stance that did not go down well with the board. He led Bangladesh through a roller-coaster World Cup campaign where victories against England and Ireland came alongside embarrassing reversals against West Indies, South Africa and India. On the whole, Bangladesh did not live up the expectations that followed their 4-0 triumph against New Zealand that preceded the World Cup.
Shakib also had an uneasy relationship with the new selection panel, headed by former captain Akram Khan. Shakib said he was not consulted before the 15-man squad for Zimbabwe was picked, while Akram insisted he was.
More to follow …