AUCKLAND (New Zealand): Bangladesh opening batsman Tamim Iqbal has opted out of the upcoming T20I series against New Zealand due to personal reasons.
Iqbal, who is the ODI skipper, said that he had conveyed his decision earlier to coach Russell Domingo and the selection committee led by Minhajul Abedin.
“Before coming to New Zealand, I had informed the head coach and chief selector that I won’t be available for the T20I series,” ESPNCricinfo quoted Iqbal as saying.
“It is for personal reasons. My best wishes are with the team. When the coach said that we have an opportunity to do well here, it includes the T20Is as well,” he added.
Bangladesh is yet to name its T20 squad for the series against the Kiwis. The T20I side is led by Mahmudullah and most likely the squad will come out during the ODI series.
Bangladesh and New Zealand will be locking horns in the three-match ODI series, beginning Saturday and it will conclude on March 26.
After that, both teams will shift their attention to the shortest format as they will lock horns in the three-match T20I series.
The first T20I will be played on March 28, while the other two will go ahead on March 30 and April 1.
Tamim Iqbal is Bangladesh’s leading run-getter in the shortest format and he is their only centurion in T20I cricket and the left-handed batsman also has eight fifties to his name.
Bangladesh had last played a T20I against Zimbabwe last year, and the three-match series against New Zealand will be their first chance since then to prepare for the T20 World Cup scheduled to be played in India this year.