Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) President Nazmul Hassan, MP has expressed deep bereavement at the passing away of former National Cricket Coach and the pioneer of cricket coaching in Bangladesh Syed Altaf Hossain. The eminent cricket figure, who had overseen the rebirth of the game in this country post-independence, breathed his last yesterday evening at his residence in Dhaka. Syed Altaf Hossain was 81. He will be buried at Hussaini Dalan in Dhaka today afternoon.
Mr Hassan in a condolence message said: “We have lost an architect who had shaped the return of cricket in Bangladesh following independence in 1971. Syed Altaf Hossain had the most pleasant personality and was respected by all for his selfless commitment to our cricket.
“His is a lasting legacy. For half a century he had worked with exemplary dedication, sincerity and honesty, often in the most challenging circumstances to develop cricketers and the game of cricket. Altaf Hossain’s contribution to Bangladesh cricket will never be forgotten.
“On behalf of the Bangladesh Cricket Board, I extend heartfelt condolences to the family of Syed Altaf Hossain and pray for the salvation of his soul.”
In an illustrious sports career Syed Altaf Hossain was most famed for his role as a cricket coach. However, as a player he is on record as being the first cricketer from erstwhile East Pakistan to get selected for a Test squad when he was named in the 15-member Pakistan side for the first Test against New Zealand in 1965. He was also a top-rated umpire with the experience of officiating in first class matches.
Altaf Hossain became a cricket coach with the National Sports Council in 1973 and played a pioneering role in the re-emergence of the game in Bangladesh in the period following the War of Liberation. Apart from being coach of the National side in representative matches, he was the Head Coach of the Bangladesh National Team in the 1990 Asia Cup tournament. Under his guidance women’s cricket started its journey in this country with a tour by Abahani Krira Chakra to West Bengal in 1982. From 1996 to 2007, he worked closely with the Bangladesh Cricket Board in creating a base for talented women cricketers. For his service to Bangladesh cricket he received the National Sports Award in 1999.
A minute’s silence will be observed before the start of today’s scheduled matches of the Dhaka Premier Division T20 Tournament 2018-19 in memory of Syed Altaf Hossain.