Bangladesh T20I captain Shakib al Hasan said their developing on-field rivalry against Sri Lanka is a positive for the game, and a pleasure for the crowd and the media. The Tigers in the past few months have grown a rivalry against the islanders. While for the supporters, Lankan head coach Chandika Hathurusingha's decision to join Sri Lanka after leaving the Bangladesh post abruptly fascinated them.
Friday night in Colombo's R Premadasa Cricket Stadium, the growing rivalry between the two cricketing nations took a leap further following last-over drama where Bangladesh emerged victorious with two wickets and a delivery to spare. The controversy over a "no-ball" decision had triggered a brawl between the two sides which lasted even during the mandatory handshakes.
"What happens in the field should never spill over off the field. To be honest, we are all good friends. We see each other in the BPL and DPL. The two boards (BCB and SLC) have great relations. We help each other a lot. Just like I would want my team to win at all cost, they would have the same feeling. I am sure that both teams will never let it go off the field," said Shakib to the media in Colombo following the game Friday.
Shakib, who returned to the national fold through the Sri Lanka game after recovering from finger injury, opined that on-field rivalry is good for the game.
"[A bit of needle] is good for the crowd and journalists. It is good for cricket. Otherwise, we come, we play, we go. There is no spice in it. We Bangladeshis and Sri Lankans are used to having a lot of spice in our food. It is better to have this spice but only on the ground. Not outside the ground," said Shakib.