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Bangladesh allows bad boy Shakib to play Big Bash

Dhaka: Bangladesh cricket chiefs announced today that they were lifting a suspension for bad behaviour on Shakib Al Hasan, allowing the star all-rounder to play in overseas leagues including Australia's Big Bash T20 tournament.

Shakib Al Hasan
Shakib Al Hasan 

"We have given Shakib the assurance that his embargo on playing overseas leagues will be lifted in the next meeting of the board," Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hassan told reporters. The next meeting is on Thursday. The BCB banned Shakib, 27, the country's most popular sportsman, from playing cricket for the national side for six months in July for what it said was a "severe attitude problem".

However the board watered down the ban one month later, allowing him to play for Bangladesh after the team suffered humiliating Test and one-day series losses in the West Indies. But the board had maintained the restriction on Shakib's appearance in overseas leagues such as the Indian Premier League, the Big Bash and English county cricket until the end of December next year.

Shakib, who has a history of discipline problems, was suspended after he reportedly threatened to quit international cricket when he was called back to Dhaka before his planned appearance in the Caribbean Premier League Twenty20 tournament. The BCB president said Shakib recently appealed against the overseas embargo because he was keen to play in the Big Bash, which starts on December 18.

"There is no reason why we should not lift the embargo. We are going to lift the embargo in time so that he can play the Big Bash," Hassan said. Shakib was the star performer for Bangladesh in the just-ended series against Zimbabwe. He was named man of the series in the Tests after bagging 18 wickets and scoring 251 runs.

During the second Test in the southern city of Khulna last month, he scored a century and claimed 10 wickets, becoming only the third player to achieve the feat after cricket legends Imran Khan and Ian Botham.

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