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Shakib Al Hasan Eyes Prolonged Career Aims for 2026 T20 World Cup Participation

Bangladesh veteran and former captain Shakib Al Hasan had hinted at taking a call on his international career after the Champions Trophy 2025 back in September last year. However, it appears the stalwart has no immediate plans to bow out of the cricketing scene, as he is now setting his sights on yet another T20 World Cup in 2026, which will be co-hosted by India and Sri Lanka.

Shakib, alongside Indian skipper Rohit Sharma, has the unique distinction of participating in all nine T20 World Cups held thus far. This incredible journey through the world’s premier T20 cricket tournament has left many speculating if the recent edition would be his last. Yet, the iconic all-rounder is defying those expectations and charting a course for further glory in the shortest format of the game.

In a video recently uploaded on the Bangladesh Cricket Board’s official Facebook page, Shakib expressed his aspirations and reflections on his prolonged career. “Firstly, when I started, I didn’t expect that I would play for so long,” Shakib remarked. “Secondly, it’s a matter of pride that since the inception of the T20 Cricket World Cup, I, along with Rohit Sharma, have featured in all of them. It’s a significant achievement for me, and I’m happy that I could represent the country with consistency.”

He further highlighted his ambitions for the future, stating, “Me and Rohit Sharma are the only two players who have played in all the T20 World Cups. I hope that I can play another World Cup, but before that, I would like to perform well in the upcoming tournament. I also hope that Bangladesh can perform better than in the previous T20 tournaments.”

Shakib’s determination to keep playing is not just about personal accolades. He has been vocal about his desire to contribute significantly to Bangladesh’s success in the global arena. Reflecting on the recent disappointing series defeat against the USA, where Bangladesh lost 2-1, Shakib maintained an optimistic outlook. He believes that conditions in India and Sri Lanka will be favorable for Bangladesh, potentially boosting their chances of a strong performance in the 2026 T20 World Cup.

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“Even though the USA is like a second home for me since my family is based there, it doesn’t change my dedication to the sport and my country,” Shakib stated. “I think we can perform well because in our past games in the West Indies and America, we had positive outcomes. For instance, when we played in Florida, we delivered impressive performances.”

Shakib’s unparalleled journey in the T20 World Cup is adorned with numerous highlights and milestones. His contributions as an all-rounder have been pivotal for Bangladesh across various formats of the game. As he gears up for the future, fans and cricket pundits alike are watching closely to see how the veteran all-rounder will shape his legacy in the years to come.

Amidst his personal aspirations, Shakib’s focus remains unwavering on the immediate challenges. The upcoming tournaments are crucial for Bangladesh, and Shakib’s experience will undoubtedly be a cornerstone for the team’s strategy. With a wealth of knowledge and a career spanning over a decade and a half, Shakib is more than just a player; he is a reservoir of wisdom and a mentor for many budding cricketers.

The T20 World Cup in 2026 promises to be another milestone not just for Shakib but for cricket enthusiasts worldwide who have followed his extraordinary career. His resilience and commitment to the game serve as an inspirational tale of dedication and passion. Shakib Al Hasan, through his journey, has perhaps implicitly stressed a vital lesson: the true essence of sportsmanship lies not just in playing but in inspiring and leading through example.

As the cricket world eagerly anticipates the unfolding of future events and tournaments, Shakib Al Hasan’s story continues to be written, one match at a time. His hopes of participating in yet another T20 World Cup resonate with his undying spirit and love for cricket. For now, as Shakib focuses on the forthcoming tournaments, his fans hold on to that glimmer of hope of seeing their hero once more on the grandest stage of T20 cricket in 2026, adding yet another chapter to his illustrious career.