Shakib Al Hasan withdraws from sponsorship deal with betting company after ire from BCB

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Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan has withdrawn from his sponsorship deal with company Betwinner News, confirmed the operations chairman of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB). This news came shortly after the BCB President stated that the all-rounder would never play for the national side again if he did not end his affiliation with the company.

Jalal Yunus, the operations chairman, said that Shakib informed the BCB about his withdrawal in a letter on August 11, Thursday. Yunus also said that Shakib would delete all social media posts associated with the sponsorship. Bangladesh continues to implement a British era gambling law that prohibits betting, including promotion of any kind. And Shakib’s association with Betwinner News was a violation of the law.

“Shakib has informed us shortly before [now] that he has terminated the contract with the company. He said that all social media posts pertaining to that sponsorship will be deleted,” Yunus told ESPNcricinfo.

Let alone the captaincy, he won’t be in the team: BCB

Nazmul Hasan, the President of the BCB stated that the law is “clear-cut”. He said that Betwinner News, although can be called a news company, it is branded as a betting company. He added that Shakib must decide if he wants to play for Bangladesh or stay with the betting company.

“He (Shakib) has to decide if he wants to play for Bangladesh, or stay with betting,” said Hasan. “There’s no scope of keeping that association. He has to come out of it completely. Let alone the captaincy, he won’t be in the team. There’s no discussion. We have taken a very clear decision.”

“Anyone who has any affiliation with a betting company can’t have a connection with the Bangladesh Cricket Board. We will not take him in the team unless we get a satisfactory answer from him,” the BCB President added. Shakib became the captain Bangladesh Test side after Mominul Haque stepped down from the role last month.

Shakib was expected to lead Bangladesh in the upcoming Asia Cup 2022 before he made a social media post, announcing his partnership with Betwinner News on August 2. Bangladesh have now delayed their announcement of the squad for the tournament and are expected to announce it on Saturday.

No action from BCCI?

In India several cricketers including top all rounder Ravichandran Ashwin, former international Suresh Raina act as brand ambassadors for betting brands. BCCI has never responded publicly about cricketers active or retired promoting betting brands.