Bangladesh
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Tiger turned Cop: Mehrab cherishes new role

A career switch is never easy and for a former cricketer, who has played at the highest level for their country, it is probably even more difficult. 

Recently pictures surfaced on social media showing former Bangladesh batter Mehrab Hossain junior being sworn into the Niagara Regional Police in Canada.

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He was sworn in before receiving the duty badge from the chief of Niagara Regional Police Bryan MacCulloch, at the Niagara Regional headquarters.

Mehrab, who played seven Tests, 18 ODIs and two T2OIs for Bangladesh, was an aspiring commentator afterwards but he decided to move to Canada in 2018 as a student while he was still playing in the country's domestic competitions.

"It was a sudden plan. I didn't even share it with too many people. I guess now I can share the thought process behind my plan, I knew I would probably be able to play for four-five more years and then maybe pursue my career in commentary but once I became a father, I had to think about my children's future and seeing the struggle of a regular citizen in Bangladesh was concerning for me. I was lucky and privileged to have a good life and thanks to Allah and then cricket for that," Mehrab told The Daily Star.

After the initial struggles, Mehrab got his Permanent Residency in 2021 and since then, he has been able to do a few better-paying jobs but the 36-year-old was not satisfied with those roles. 
Eventually one of his friends suggested him a job posting for Niagara Regional Police Service and it turned out to be the beginning of a new chapter for Mehrab.

"One of my friends, Tisham Mohammed, who is a banker here, wanted me to join the police and had sent me the job posting that said Niagara Regional Police Service is hiring. I never thought that link would be the turning point in my career. Soon after, I applied and then got accepted. After a long strenuous five-month hiring process and 20 weeks of intense training, where I had to stay away from family for 13 weeks in a residential camp which felt like I was back in BKSP, I was able to call myself Constable Hossain. After playing for the country, this was probably the most satisfying moment that I felt in terms of my professional career. I received my badge from the Chief of Niagara Regional Police on Sept 7," he said.

Although the former left-handed batter does not get the time to follow Bangladesh cricket anymore but he is still in touch with his former teammates Mahmudullah Riyad, Enamul Haque jr and Nazmul Hossain. They have a WhatsApp group to discuss about cricket. He recently met Shakib Al Hasan who was in Canada to take part in the Global T10 league.
However, when asked whether Bangladesh cricket is heading towards the right direction, Mehrab felt that the lack of communication between the board and the players has often caused issues on and off the field which is something he said needed fixing.

"Well, it is very hard to have an opinion when I am so far away from the scene but from what I hear and observe on social media and the news, I was a little upset with all the drama that has been going on around Tamim and Riyad. It seems it has become a norm in Bangladesh cricket to castrate senior cricketers and not give them the respect that they deserve. We have seen that happen with Mashrafe. Mushfiqur also had to go through some drama as well, and now Tamim and Riyad. We should remember that those five or six names as well as the youngsters, are a big reason why Bangladesh is currently as a team and none of us can deny that," he said.

According to Mehrab, the time has come for Bangladesh to lift a major trophy in international cricket considering the mixture of youth and experience in the current team.

In terms of his personal goals, Mehrab who is determined to prevent crime and help the community is willing to join the Homicide unit which is a specialty unit in the service and serve the people of Canada. However, he did not forget to mention, "I might be living in Canada but my culture is in my heart and I am always a Bengali and I will uphold and represent my country to the highest standard no matter where I am or work."