The prime minister, Sheikh Hasina, on Tuesday termed it unfortunate and odd that International Cricket Council (ICC) president AHM Mustafa Kamal was not allowed onto the stage for the purpose of handing over the World Cup trophy to champions Australia after the final match.
The prime minister made the comments during the meeting of the executive committee of the National Economic Council held at the NEC conference room in the city’s Sher-e-Banglanagar area today, reports United News of Bangladesh.
According to meeting sources the prime minister, right at the outset of the meeting, noted how it looked really odd that ICC president AHM Mustafa Kamal was not part of the presentation team after the World Cup final. The Prime Minister termed the incident – that breached the ICC’s own constitution whereby the World Cup trophy has been handed over to the winning team by the ICC president since 1999 – ‘unacceptable in the civilized world’ as well as ‘unfortunate’.
Sheikh Hasina also observed that in the past, it was the ICC president who usually gave trophies to the winning captain, an accepted norm in global cricket.
She also opined that instead of controversial Indian cricket administrator and ICC chairman N Srinivasan, if the honour had gone to the Australian prime minister, no questions would have been raised.
The prime minister, a great lover of cricket, again expressed her dissatisfaction over the umpiring decisions during the quarterfinal match between Bangladesh and India. She found it normal that anyone could be moved to comment on the level of umpiring during that game.
‘I don’t see anything wrong in Kamal (ICC President) too commenting over the issue. But, the way ICC handled the situation, especially not to allow Kamal on to the prize-giving stage is unacceptable,’ said the sources quoting the prime minister.
Meanwhile, the ICC president will hold a press conference on Wednesday at 12:00 noon in the VIP Lounge of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport upon his return from Australia.
Earlier on March 29, the International Cricket Council allowed its chairman Narayanswami Srinivasan to hand over the World Cup trophy to Michael Clarke, a task supposed to be undertaken by its sitting president AHM Mustafa Kamal.
As per the ICC constitution it is the president who is supposed to give away the trophy to the winning captain.
To the dismay of many in Bangladesh’s cricketing fraternity, the opportunity to hand over world cricket’s biggest prize was taken away from the president allegedly due to the ill-advised comments Kamal, a former Bangladesh Cricket Board president, made following the Bangladesh-India quarterfinal.
Commonly known as Lotus Kamal in Bangladesh, the first president after the ICC’s restructuring, has three months of his one-year term left.
Source: New Age