Despite being a last-minute addition to the squad of the one-off Test against Zimbabwe, Mahmudullah Riyad proved his batsmanship once again. He returned an unbeaten 150 in the first innings of the Harare Test. It immediately created a hope that Mahmudullah would last in Tests for a longer period of time now. But Mahmudullah had another idea— after hitting career-best innings, he abruptly announced his retirement from the format that left many astonished.
But two former captains of the Bangladesh team— Aminul Islam Bulbul and Khaled Mashud Pilot, believe that it was Mahmudullah’s personal call and they respect it.
Mahmudullha has maintained a mysterious silence since he received a guard of honour ahead of the final day’s play in the Harare Test. He didn’t say a word about his retirement officially. The guard of honour came as the self-explanatory for his retirement.
“Mahmudullah was earlier told to focus on the white-ball cricket more by the team management. Despite being available, he was overlooked on a few occasions. He might have done it for it. But it was completely his own decision, and we have to respect him,” Aminul, who led Bangladesh in the inaugural Test, told UNB.
“Mahmudullah played in Harare as replacement of Tamim (Iqbal) or Mushfiqur (Rahim) as they are not fully fit. If they were fit, Mahmudullah might not have had the chance. However, what he did is his personal call. We have to respect it. And at the same time, it cannot be an example of the way of retiring from the national team. He informed his teammate when a match was underway. It would have been better if he told before the match or after it. But there is nothing about unprofessionalism. A player has the right to call his time whenever he wants,” Aminul added.
Mashud also echoed Aminul saying that it was Mahmudullah’s decision to call his time, and he has all the right to do so.
“It’s his personal decision, and we have nothing to say about it. But we may ask why he has taken this decision this way. It is actually the board who should find out. I think there is a gap between the players and the board. Whatever the reason, it seems both the board and players lack respect for each other,” Mashud told UNB.