Veteran Bangladesh batsman Mushfiqur Rahim on Tuesday expressed no regrets in not being part of the Indian Premier League, saying playing for his country is bigger than participation in the cash-rich league. Although, he did admit that involvement in IPL would raise his game to a higher level.
"No, I don't have any regrets. I don't think that playing the IPL can be bigger than representing my country. I think IPL is definitely one of the biggest T20 leagues in the world and all the top-class players of the world play there. So I would've considered myself fortunate enough to play in such a tournament. I could definitely take my game to a higher level, sharing the dressing room with legends. If I get an opportunity then, of course, I'll play. And if I don't get then honestly, I will never regret it," he told Cricbuzz.
Rahim had earlier placed his name for the IPL 2020 auction and was even party of the final 338-man list. He had kept his base price as INR 75 lakhs, but went unsold. Not just Mushfiqur, his teammate Mustafizur Rahman also went unsold at the auction.
Rahim also talked about the immense criticism he faced for opting to not tour Pakistan for the same reason why he opted out of the Pakistan Super League. He explained that it was a personal choice especially after what he faced in New Zealand, recalling the 2019 mosque attack.
"I feel very bad when someone questions my commitment. I can say with my hand on my heart that not only as a cricketer but also as a human being I have never been dishonest, nor have I ever cheated anyone. It's even more embarrassing when people around you who have shared a dressing room with you say it," he said.
"I said it very clearly. I didn't say at first that I wouldn't go. If we were given instructions from the BCB that everyone should go, then there would have been no question. Since they had given us an option to decide if I want to go or not, it is a personal choice. And the second thing is the security.
"I opted out of a lucrative tournament like PSL when I heard from my agent that the whole tournament will take place in Pakistan.
"Earlier it used to be held in Dubai where I gave my name once and played, but when I heard that it would be in Pakistan, it was a no from my side. I still couldn't forget what I faced in New Zealand.
"With all due respect, it isn't like that if I don't go, the Bangladesh team will lose all the matches or will never be able to play (well). Other senior players have backed out of tours many times. Why these types of questions didn't come up then, why only in my case?"