Prior to the 2023 Asia Cup, Bangladesh skipper across all formats of cricket – Shakib Al Hasan played in the Lankan Premier League wearing the jersey of Galle Titans, a team sponsored by an Indian-based betting site named crickex. The betting site previously congratulated the ace all-rounder on the occasion of receiving One-day International captaincy from the management.
Until that stage, the situation hasn’t gone too far given the fact that tournament does not have any involvement with Bangladesh and despite many Muslim players being seen to hide betting and alcohol brands’ logos from their kits, it really depends on person-to-person. However, for the last couple of days, an advertisement video from that particular betting site has been swirling around on different websites where Shakib Al Hasan was seen promoting them on the jersey of his LPL team.
Despite there being no confirmation posts from Shakib’s social media handles regarding this issue and it could be a work of Artificial Intelligence, Shakib was criticized last year after he made an endorsement announcement last year with another betting site’s sister concern. The cricket fraternity of Bangladesh was outraged given the fact there are stringent prohibitions to run any kind of betting company on establishments in Bangladesh protected by the law of this land. Subsequently, the BCB gave him an ultimatum to choose between the betting site and the national team.
Shakib responded to the call and terminated his endorsement with that company but by that time BCB informed the media that, Shakib hadn’t informed them before signing the contract though cricketers have to submit the paper first to their parenting organization prior to going for any kind of deal.
Alarmingly, online betting activities have been on the rise inside Bangladesh for a few years and thousands of people are addicted to it before becoming destitute. Besides, betting advertisements are everywhere – from dictionary sites to YouTube videos and they are enjoying impunity even after explicitly confessing that they are running their business inside this country.
It is yet to be confirmed whether Shakib acted in that video or it’s just a creation of AI technology but the authorities should clamp down on it like other inappropriate websites to protect the future of our beloved motherland.
Aside from these, Shakib should also step up against the site if he has no involvement with the company as it can mislead mass populations. Another worth-mentioning point is these sites have been using photos of Shakib and other popular faces like Moeen Ali to promote themselves, so don’t be outrageous over Shakib without any proper confirmation.