Updated: March 18, 2018 9:18:16 am
LET US start off by clearing up the mystery of the shattered glass door at the Premadasa. The verdict is that nobody broke it, not intentionally anyway.
The Indian Express has learnt that one of the senior Bangladesh players was responsible for the shards of glass lying around. But despite the overflow of emotions during that dramatic last over, it wasn’t a case of this player actually smashing the dressing-room door down. It might have seemed a reasonable assumption considering the drama which played out in the middle.
At one point Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan had called in Mahmudullah and Rubel Hossain before better sense prevailed. Shortly, Mahmudullah sent the ball over the square leg-boundary when six was needed off just two to trigger manic celebrations at R Premadasa Stadium. The commotion in the middle, before the winning runs were scored, started when Bangladesh substitute Nurul Hasan, who had come onto the field, was pushed by a Sri Lankan player.
As it turns out, the player broke the glass after misjudging a ‘push’ for a ‘pull’ while opening the door in the euphoria of Bangladesh pulling off one of the most famous victories in their history.
Understandably in his excitement and the built-up frustration he ended up pushing it out with more force than usual. As a result the glass door was shifted from its groove before eventually giving way and being completely shattered. The Bangladeshi players hadn’t helped their cause — with regards to claims on social media that they’d raided the dressing-room like some 1970s rock n roll band in the aftermath of their win — based on their over the top celebrations in front of a shocked Premadasa crowd.
Though most of the Bangladesh players remained tight-lipped about the manic scenes of Friday night, they did insist that the senior player wasn’t even aware of the door mishap. And that it was only the caterers at the Premadasa who discovered the remains of what once was the door between the visitors’ dressing-room and the dugout area where we saw the rest of the Bangladesh team assemble during those final moments. News of the door-break was then passed on to match referee Chris Broad by the Sri Lanka Cricket officials after they were informed about it by the catering staff.
In normal circumstances, you might expect Shakib & Co to be a little low-key on Sunday following the fines incurred and the scrutiny that their behaviour will be under. But it’s difficult to imagine them being any less pumped-up. For, by beating Sri Lanka for the second time in the tournament they after all have booked a place in the final of the tri-series against India of all teams.
It’ll be the one contest that gets them going the most and pushes the inherently emotional team to another level of intensity. It’ll be their umpteenth chance at finally doing what they want to do most, beating India and that too in a big game.
If they do somehow manage to cross that hurdle that irks them the most, then expect the madness of Friday night—where their entire team and some coaching staff including former captain Khaled Mahmud broke into the wild cobra dance while Shakib ran around with his shirt off — to be just a teaser.
On the eve of the final, Shakib looked and sounded sheepish when asked about the incident. While almost blushing, he said, “I don’t know. Let what happened yesterday remain like that. Don’t bring it to today or tomorrow’s game. Let us just focus on the final,” he replied. He was also non-committal over his views on whether some of the Sri Lankans too should have been penalized for their role in the melee. Kusal Mendis in particular had to be restrained by Tamim Iqbal.
“What happened yesterday, let it remain like that. We don’t want to discuss these things. The two cricket boards have good relation for the last 10-15 years. Players have great relations too. We are all okay with it. We must move forward from this,” he said, sporting the same smile. That smile would be of a different kind if his team manage to beat India on Sunday.
Shakib, Hasan fined
Shakib was summoned later by Broad and he’s learnt to have explained his stand with regard to his directions to the batsmen to walk off the field. By Saturday morning, Bangladesh skipper Shakib, for his actions on the sidelines with the match poised at 19.2 overs in his team’s innings, and reserve player Nurul Hasan were fined 25 percent of their match fees and also they received one demerit point for breaching level 1 of the ICC Code of Conduct. Behind the scenes, the Bangladesh Cricket board had informed the Lankan board that they will pay for the damages.
Shakib had been pulled up for his angry reactions on the sidelines, which included the verbal confrontation with the fourth umpire and attempts to call back his players. Hasan for his exchange with Thisara Perera.
As far as the mystery over the door goes, The Indian Express has learnt that venue manager Godfrey Dabre revealed to have not been around the dressing-room at the time of the incident. There are no CCTV cameras inside the dressing room, meaning lack of video evidence. And match referee Broad, meanwhile, wasn’t prepared to accept the evidence of a member from the catering staff, insisting that he instead needed a SLC official to be on record for the matter to be probed further.
India vs Bangladesh (final) Live on DSport: 6 pm
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