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Bangla players hit for a six by ICL

With the threat of the IPL looming large on the international cricket scenario, the ICL, a similar but less glamourous event, has claimed the dubious distinction of luring some international cricketers into taking premature retirement.

Six current national players are among 14 Bangladeshi cricketers who will form a new team, named Dhaka Warriors, in this year's ‘rebel’ Indian Cricket League, media reports here said.

According to a report in Prothom Alo, former captain Habibul Bashar and retired spinner Mohammed Rafique are among the 14 cricketers who are slated to play in the unofficial league to be played in venues across India beginning on 10 October.

Other than former captain Habibul Bashar ~ Shariar Nafees, Aftab Ahmed, Mosharraf Hossain, Farhad Reza and Dhiman Ghosh ~ have contracts with the Bangladesh Cricket Board cited “personal reasons” in their resignation letters, board official Mr Ashraf Hossain said.

The board was holding an emergency meeting today to discuss the resignations. Bashar said he had an offer to join the ICL but was yet to sign any contract.

Other former or current national team players who were also expected to the join the ICL include Mohammed Rafique, Alok Kapali, Nazim Uddin, Manjurul Islam, Tapash Baishya and Mohammad Sharif, the daily newspaper reported.

The loss of so many top players would devastate the Bangladesh national team, which already struggle to compete against the top sides in international play. The national team, which included Kapali, Reza and Ghosh, convincingly lost all three matches in a ODI series against Australia earlier this month. The newspaper also claimed that current captain Mohammad Ashraful was approached to lead the team but he turned down the offer.

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