Player-turned-politician Mortaza not aiming to be the next Imran Khan

Sudhir Gupta 21:45 15/12/2018
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Mashrafe Mortaza.

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza has decided to jump into politics but he has no ambition to become the next Imran Khan.

Former fast bowler and captain Imran is now the Prime Minister of Pakistan and comparisons are being drawn between the Pakistani great and the Bangladeshi pacer who will be contesting for the ruling Awami League party in the December 30 national elections.

However, Mortaza said his aim is to simply do more for sports and charity.

“To be honest, the level where Imran Khan has reached, people cannot always reach there even if they want to,” Mashrafe was quoted as saying by AFP.

“My desire is to do something for sports… since I am a sportsman, my wish is limited here. I will work for my region to see if I can do something good.”

Mortaza’s charity Narail Express – which is the pacer’s nickname – has donated ambulances to hospitals and high-yield rice seeds to farmers.

While it is fairly common for famous cricketers to enter politics in the subcontinent, Mortaza is unique as he is the current ODI captain and is likely to lead the team at next year’s World Cup.

When he announced his decision to enter politics, Mortaza received a lot of criticism.

“All I can say from my position is the people who are in a different party or believe in a different political belief, I don’t have any disrespect for them,” he said.

“Even though I’m supporting my party wholeheartedly, I have 100 percent respect for them and will continue to have it. I’m saying this because every person has the right to support who they want to support. I can only respect the opposition from my heart, which I really do.”

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