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Shakib will lead Bangladesh to 2023 World Cup: Mortaza

 DHAKA, Oct 30: ODI captain Mashrafe Mortaza on Wednesday said he will spend many sleepless nights after the recent ICC ban on his colleague Shakib Al Hasan but exuded confidence that the star all-rounder will make a successful comeback and lead Bangladesh to the 2023 World Cup.

Shakib, Bangladesh’s Test and T20 captain and the world’s No. 1 all-rounder in ODIs, was on Tuesday handed a two-year suspension by the ICC for failing to report three corrupt approaches, including one at the IPL, by a suspected Indian bookie, ousting him from the upcoming tour of India.

Twelve months of that ban is a suspended sentence which will come into effect if the 32-year-old fails to comply with the anti-corruption code of the world body.

The one-year ban that he has to serve will keep him out of next year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) and also the World T20 to be held in Australia from October 18 to November 15 the same year.

“Definitely I will spend some sleepless nights in the light of the recent incidents surrounding my comrade of 13 years. But I can also sleep in peace soon knowing fully well that he will lead us to the 2023 World Cup because the name is Shakib Al Hasan,” Mashrafe wrote in Bengali on his twitter handle.

Former skipper Mushfiqur Rahim also offered support to Shakib, saying he can’t even think of taking the field without him and he along with the whole country stands firmly behind him. – PTI

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