Christchurch mosque shooting: Narrow escape for Bangladesh cricketers

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 15 March 2019, 09:02 AM
Bangladesh cricketers had to turn back after there was shooting at the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch. (Image credit: Twitter)
Bangladesh cricketers had to turn back after there was shooting at the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch. (Image credit: Twitter)
HIGHLIGHTS
    • Fatalities are reported in the Christchurch mosque shooting.
    • New Zealand police have urged people to stay indoors.
    • Bangladesh were whitewashed 0-3 in the ODIs and lost the first two Tests.

Armed police in New Zealand swarmed central Christchurch on Friday amid reports of a shooting at Al Noor mosque in the South Island city. "Police are responding with its full capability to manage the situation, but the risk environment remains extremely high." Local media said there were multiple casualties at one mosque and said another had been evacuated. However, the Bangladesh cricket team, who are touring New Zealand and will play the third and final Test at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Saturday, had a narrow escape. A video tweeted by Bangladesh’s ESPNCricinfo correspondent Mohammad Isam showed the Bangladesh cricketers Tamim Iqbal and Taijul Islam running back from Hagley Park back to the cricket ground. The incident took place around 1.45pm local time when the team had gone to pray when the incident took place. According to reports, there has been incidents of another shooting in a mosque in Linwood. There are also reports of a shooting outside Christchurch hospital and a bomb was found outside Strickland street.

There were a couple of Bangladesh journalists who were accompanying the team and they decided to turn back. Canterbury Police have tweeted to avoid the area around Dean Avs stating that there was a critical incident in the area. The fate of the Test match which will be played on March 16 is uncertain. There has been no word yet from both the Bangladesh Cricket Board and the New Zealand Cricket Board on whether the Test match will be conducted in the wake of the incident. The distance from Hagley Oval to the shooting area is just 1.4 kilometers away.

At the time of filing the story, the shooting was still going on and New Zealand Police tweeted to Christchurch residents to be indoors and that all schools were locked down. 

Tamim Iqbal, who was seen walking back to Hagley Oval, tweeted Entire team got saved from active shooters!!! Frightening experience and please keep us in your prayers #christchurchMosqueAttack. Mushfiqur Rahim also tweeted saying that the team had a narrow escape.

Bangladesh have endured a torrid time on the field in New Zealand, losing all three ODIs by big margins to be whitewashed 3-0. They lost the first Test by an innings and 52 runs in Hamilton and in the previous Test at Wellington, Bangladesh still lost the Test by an innings and 12 runs despite two days being washed due to rain at the Basin Reserve. 

First Published: Friday, March 15, 2019 08:06 AM
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