Mashrafe hits back at question about self-respect: “Am I a thief?” 

  • Sports Correspondent from Sylhet,
    Published: 2020-02-29 17:49:25 BdST


Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza has reacted angrily to a question by a journalist insinuating that a player's self-respect was linked to his performances on the field.

The skipper has been subjected to a flurry of criticism for his performances in the World Cup in 2019, prompting calls for his retirement in some quarters.

Speaking at a press conference in Sylhet  on Saturday ahead of the Tigers' first ODI against Zimbabwe, Mashrafe straigth-batted questions about his future.

But the veteran seamer took umbrage when his self-respect was seemingly brought into question.

"Self-respect or shame... Do I steal when I'm out on the field? Am I a thief? I can't find any link between playing cricket and self-respect or shame. What do I have to be ashamed of? I play for Bangladesh. Am I against the people of the country?"

"If I can't perform then I'll be left out of the side. It's that simple."

Any player can suffer a dip in form and so he must be open to scrutiny about his discipline or approach to the game, according to Mashrafe.

"You (reporters) and fans will criticise me if I don't get wickets. But why should I be ashamed because of that? I don't have any problem with criticism. But why would I have to put my self-respect at stake? It's not that I'm committing theft."