Final New Zealand, Bangladesh test called off after Christchurch mosque shootings
Sedney:_New Zealand and Bangladesh on Friday cancelled the third Test after multiple people were killed in gun attacks on mosques in Christchurch, including one that was attended by the Bangladeshi team.
The final Test was scheduled to start on Saturday.
“A joint decision between NZC and the @BCBtigers has been made to cancel the Hagley Oval Test,” the New Zealand team tweeted, adding that all players and officials were safe.
Bangladeshi players and team staff arrived at the city’s Masjid al Noor for Friday prayers as a shooting unfolded and were warned not to go inside, reported News18.
“We are shocked and appalled, as I’m sure all New Zealanders are,” NZ Cricket chief executive David White told TVNZ.
“I have spoken to my counterpart in Bangladesh and we both agree that it’s inappropriate to play cricket at this time.”
Bangladesh Cricket Board spokesman Jalal Yunus said most of the team were bussed to the mosque and were about to go inside when the incident happened. “They are safe. But they are mentally shocked. We have asked the team to stay confined in the hotel,” he told AFP.
Meanwhile, the strength and conditioning coach Mario Villavarayen said: “The players are shaken up but fine. I spoke to one of them shortly after (the incident). They didn’t see anything but heard gunshots. They were at the ground (Hagley Oval) and just started running.
“The coaching staff were all at the hotel. The players just started running when they heard the shots. I don’t know how many (shots) there were. This happened at about 1.45pm.”
Opening batsman Tamim Iqbal wrote on Twitter: “Entire team got saved from active shooters!!! Frightening experience and please keep us in your prayers.”
Local media said there were multiple casualties at one mosque and that another had been evacuated.