Shakib Al Hasan Refers To Hindi Film While Sharing Plans To Revamp Bangladesh Premier League

Two years ahead of the start of the new cricketing season, Bangladesh skipper Shakib Al Hasan sharply criticized the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), highlighting the lack of timely player drafts and improper scheduling that leads to the clashes with other T20 leagues. The all-rounder said that he would have ensured a timely player’s draft and a schedule that would not lead to clashing with other leagues. While referring to a Bollywood movie, titles ‘Nayak’, Shakib said that he would revamp the league if he was named the CEO.

“If they made me the BPL CEO, it would take me one or two months to correct everything. You have seen the movie Nayak right? If you want to do something, you can do it in one day. I would do the players’ draft and auction (on time) and hold the BPL during a free time. We will have all the modern technologies. There will be quality broadcast and home and away venues,” ESPNCricinfo quoted Shakib as saying.

BPL took time in selecting owners of all seven franchises and consequently, players’ draft was delayed to November 23. Within this time, two other new T20I Leagues, SA20 of South Africa and ILT20 of UAE was able to grab most of the big-time talents. Even those who signed with BPL, will not be available for a full season, which has left the star Bangladesh all-rounder displeased.

“I do not see what’s stopping us if we have the willingness (to correct things). If we are willing, I do not see any reason not to have the DRS, the draft or auction not being held three months in advance, or the teams wouldn’t be confirmed two months in advance. The players are only available for one or two matches. Nobody really knows for how long they are available,” said Shakib.

The all-rounder said that BPL could be inferior to Dhaka Premier League (DPL), which is the country’s domestic ODI competition which has been taking place for nearly five decades.

“I saw in the news that the jersey is not ready. It is a messy situation. Maybe our DPL is more organised. They can arrange the team ahead of time. They know what their team is going to be. Every DPL team knows who is playing where for the next edition,” said Shakib.

“We do not really know what is going in the BPL. It only starts when the BPL matches start. The tournament starts from January 6. There’s no BPL before that. Before this, everyone is practicing on their own,” he added.

Shakib was critical of the lack of marketing of BPL in Bangladesh, where cricket is the most popular sport.

“There’s no market because we never created the market. If we could have added value to this market, it would have been really big. Cricket is played everywhere in this country, even in remote villages,” highlighted Shakib.

“It is a very popular sport in a country of 160-180 million, so I do not believe there cannot be a market for cricket here. It is a huge failure in terms of marketing,” he added.

Shakib said that the performances in the league do not have the same weight as the Caribbean Premier League or the Pakistan Super League.

“They show a list of countries where the BPL is telecast, but nobody really watches the tournament. When an uncapped player does well in PSL or CPL, they get a national call-up. It does not happen when they play in the BPL. It is quite disappointing that we have remained at this stage,” concluded Shakib.

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