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Tigers want to move on

Bangladesh team on Wednesday departed for India's Guwahati to play the ICC Cricket World Cup, hoping to put behind the drama that has unfolded back home following the exclusion of veteran opener Tamim Iqbal from the India-bound squad.

BCB's lateness in announcing the World Cup squad added to the drama, in fact made more room for it while the midnight meeting between coach Chandika Hathurusingha, skipper Shakib Al Hasan and BCB president Nazmul Hassan added more speculation to the already hyped-up atmosphere.

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A BCB source told The Daily Star on Tuesday morning, on the very day of the squad announcement that Shakib had communicated to the board that he would not captain the team at the World Cup if there were unfit players in the squad.

Following the squad announcement, where Tamim was dropped, plenty of criticism followed. The team also departed for India on the back of a 2-0 series loss against New Zealand at home.

Team director Khaled Mahmud, prior to the team's departure for India, told media that what had transpired the day before needed to be left behind.

"The team is going today and I believe the boys will be upbeat. We know we haven't performed well in the New Zealand series and many of the main players from both sides didn't play. But World Cup is a different stage and we are getting some time ahead of the World Cup and we have two practice matches to sort ourselves [before the tournament]," Mahmud told reporters at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.

"What has happened, there is nothing to do about it anymore. We have to look forward to tomorrow and that's the hope we are harbouring," he said.

"I feel that the dream is certainly alive in the eyes of these 15 [in the squad]. It's important to fulfil that dream. That's why not only the cricketers, but everyone, including the support staff, must be aligned together under one thread," Mahmud added.

With many young players like Tanzid Hasan Tamim and Tanzim Hasan Sakib in the squad, Mahmud urged everyone to keep faith in them.

"Many will say that the young boys are going; youngsters but they have the ability to do well and so they are going there. We have to believe these 15 cricketers selected were selected because they are the best," he said.

Bangladesh will face Sri Lanka and England respectively on September 29 and October 2 in their two warm-up matches before they travel to Dharamshala for their tournament opener against Afghanistan.