Kolkata Knight Riders are
likely to be without Bangladesh star Shakib Al Hasan when the Indian Premier
League returns to action.
The all-rounder had
previously been given permission to feature in the world's biggest domestic T20
tournament by the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB).
However, after the
competition was halted by the Covid-19 pandemic, it now looks unlikely Shakib will be able to rejoin his
KKR teammates when the UAE stages the rescheduled event.
The IPL will now restart in
September, but Bangladesh's international commitments mean the 34-year-old
won't get another no-objection certificate (NOC) from the BCB this time around.
That is another blow this
season for Kolkata, who had endured a tough start to the tournament when losing
five of their seven matches so far.
Star all-rounder Shakib had
made them a popular team to follow in his homeland, where they had been priced
around 7.0 to lift the trophy with bet365 and others on the betting site listing in Bangladesh and India.
They already face an uphill
task to reach the playoffs under new skipper Eoin Morgan, but Shakib's absence
will mean the England player has even less options to turn to at a crucial
BCB president Nazmul Hassan
outlined why Shakib would be unlikely to feature.
Speaking to Ekattor TV, he said: "Given our
schedule, it is almost impossible (for Shakib) to get the NOC. I don't see any
possibilities, nor any opportunity.
"The World Cup is
coming up, which makes every game important for us."
The position of the BCB is
no surprise after the organisation had previously come close to revoking
Shakib's first NOC to allow his Indian Premier
He accused them of
"misrepresenting" his initial request to feature in the tournament
but was eventually granted permission after a slight dispute.
That meant he missed his
country's Test series in Sri Lanka so he could play in the IPL. A thigh injury
had previously kept him out of a tour of New Zealand in March.
All of that made getting a
second NOC very unlikely given the fact Bangladesh are now keen to ramp up
their preparations for this year's T20 World Cup.
Meanwhile, it is a similar
situation for the only other Bangladesh cricketer in the IPL, Mustafizur
He featured for the
Rajasthan Royals this year but is also unlikely to be handed an NOC for the
After touring Zimbabwe for
a Test, three ODIs and three T20Is in June-July, Bangladesh will welcome
Australia for five T20Is in July-August.
New Zealand will then tour
Bangladesh with three T20Is before England arrive for three ODIs and three
T20Is in the lead up to the World Cup.
The importance of the next
series of matches for Bangladesh was underlined by Akram Khan, BCB's cricket
He said: "We have to
consider the team training together.
"We want to go into
the England series with full strength. Both the ODI Super League and the World
Cup T20 are important to us."