Left-arm pacer Mustafizur Rahman has stated that he is willing to explain his stance on Test cricket to the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) and will adopt a pick-and-choose policy to prolong his international career.
Mustafizur last played a Test for the Tigers in February 2021 in a home series against the West Indies. He then opted out of a red-ball contract after the BCB decided to introduce format-wise contracts.
Subsequently, he has missed the one-off Test against Zimbabwe and two-match series against Pakistan, New Zealand and South Africa and is unlikely to play the longest format again.
Mustafizur has now claimed that he is willing to speak to the board in order to explain his stance on opting out of Tests. Speaking to Bengali daily Ajker Patrika, Mustafizur stated, "I will clarify my position regarding playing Test cricket to the BCB if they want to know about it.
"What I see is that my seniors spoke with the BCB president [regarding playing and not playing certain formats] and I will also talk with the board president although he is well aware about the whole situation. BCB never forced me in this regard (playing Test cricket) and I don't have a red-ball contract."
Mustafizur further explained why he has adopted a pick-and-choose policy, stating that it will help him extend his international career. "For me staying healthy is important. If I want to give my services to the Bangladesh team for a long time, then staying fit is important and to remain fit I feel the best way is to pick and choose between three formats.
"I chose my format taking my success into consideration and according to records my success in T20s and ODIs is more and that is the reason I am focusing on these two formats. In the world, a lot of cricketers are choosing formats to prolong their careers. A team cannot be formed depending on one specific player."
Mustafizur also believes that his availability will not bolster the Bangladesh bowling unit in Test cricket and the management should focus on building separate units for white-ball and red-ball cricket in order to manage the workload.
Mustafizur added, "Instead of thinking that my availability will bolster the strength of the pace unit, if we think that we need separate pace bowling units for the red and white ball formats, I feel in that case the workload can be managed as it will be balanced and pace bowlers will do well consistently."