Sport

Christchurch attack changes everything for team security - New Zealand Cricket

Share
David White

The Bangladesh cricket team were lucky to escape unharmed this morning having been in attendance at the mosque where a gunman opened fire in New Zealand this morning.

Bangladeshi team were heading towards Hagley Oval ground to play the third test match against New Zealand and when the bus approached Al-Noor Mosque, shooting began in which 41 people died.

Bangladesh Cricket Team has left New Zealand after 24 hours of worst ever mass shooting in the country.

"On behalf of New Zealand Cricket heartfelt condolences to those affected", White said.

Bangladesh Cricket Board spokesman Jalal Yunus said most of the team were bussed to the mosque in Christchurch and were about to go inside for Friday prayers when the incident happened. "The Bangladesh cricket team is our national asset", he said.

Witnesses told local media that several people appeared to be injured inside the building.

Smith and Warner, although eligible for selection, will not feature in the Middle East, as they recover from elbow injuries, and are due instead to compete in the Indian Premier League, before their anticipated involvement in the World Cup and then the Ashes in England.

"The militants and terrorists have no religion, country or nation".

The panic started spreading, and we saw around 20 people were running out. "Militancy and terrorism can never bring any good to anyone", she said. "I don't know what to say".

The Canterbury cricket team, one of six first-class sides in New Zealand's domestic Plunket Shield competition, also chose to abandon their final round match in Wellington, which gave the title to Central Districts. "What has happened here is an extraordinary and unprecedented act of violence". As a country, we'll have to look at [security of visiting teams]. We planned the latter half of the day in such a way that those who wanted to have lunch, they would do so, and others would finish their prayers and then join us at the ground at 3 pm.

"Entire team got saved from active shooters", Iqbal tweeted.

Mass shootings in New Zealand are exceedingly rare.

In 2009, the Sri Lanka team was attacked during their tour of Pakistan.

White said: "This isn't about cricket; it's about something much bigger and much more important than that".

"This is significant and I can tell you now this is and will be one of New Zealand's darkest days".

"It's been great to be back around the group, they've been really welcoming again and it's nearly like we never left, so everything is on the right track", Smith said.

Had they arrived a few minutes earlier they would have been inside the mosque, where at least 30 people were killed by a gunman with an automatic rifle.

"The team plan was that a few of them made a decision to go to the mosque, which is close to the ground".

Share