DHAKA: Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan, the world’s leading all-rounder, on Tuesday defended his decision to play in limited-overs games while skipping Test cricket, saying he needs a break from the longest format to extend his career.
Shakib will sit out two Test matches during the upcoming tour of South Africa after asking his board for a six-month break from Tests.The 30-year-old will however be available for the three One-day Internationals and two Twenty20 games during his country’s first tour of South Africa since 2008.
“I get surprised when people ask me why I don’t take a break from one-day or Twenty20 internationals or from the foreign T20 league,” he told reporters.“When I play foreign T20 leagues I feel hardly any pressure. For me they are a kind of holiday. Of course, they give me some experience. Financial side is also important.
“But in Test match, I have to bat and bowl and contribute in all four innings. The team also expects me to do that. It’s not good if I cannot give my hundred per cent.”Shakib said the break from Test cricket would help him “refresh” and prolong his career.
“The biggest reason is I think I have still plenty of cricket left,” Shakib said.“If I want to play that amount of cricket and play it well, I think this break is essential for me.“I can play now if I wish. But I have to decide whether I want play five to six more years or just one to two years. I personally feel if I continue this way, I would not be able to play more than one or two years.”