The people of Bangladesh are fiercely proud of their language and culture, and resent anything that harks back to their erstwhile rulers, Pakistan. But even they make exceptions, at least when it comes to cricket.
If the talented team does make it to the World Cup quarter-final this time, at least some of their players may ‘bat’ for Pakistan. The Sialkot-made CA 10,000 cricket bats are the latest craze of the Bangladesh players.
Skipper Shakib-Al Hasan has been using them for a while. Opener Tamim Iqbal too got four bats from Pakistan. Mahmudullah and Junaid Siddique plan to get them as well.
Tamim and his roommate Minhaz Uddin Khan travelled to Sialkot last month to collect the bats that were custom-made for the attacking left-hander.
“The blade is slightly longer and the sweet spot is larger,” Tamim told HT on Monday, after the first training session since the defeat against India in the Cup opener.
The player did not want to take any chances by ordering the bats online and getting them shipped.
“He was worried it could be damaged on the way. At the immigration we were asked questions like whether we were going to Kabul and stuff. We then had to show our order letter and every document, but I'm not too sure they were convinced,” said Minhaz.
The concern over online purchase was not out of place.
The Daily Mail had reported of customs officers drilling holes in cricket bats from Pakistan to check for drugs and explosives in May, 2009.