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We were lucky not to be caught in crossfire: Bangladesh manager

CHRISTCHURCH: "We were really lucky. Had we reached even three or four minutes earlier, we probably would have been inside the mosque," said Bangladesh cricket staff manager Khaled Mashud on Friday after narrowly escaping the deadliest terror attack in New Zealand's historical past.

The Bangladesh staff, which was once scheduled to play within the 3rd and final Test towards New Zealand beginning here on Saturday, was once on its technique to the mosque, one in all two websites of the taking pictures attack that killed a minimum of 49 people. The excursion has now been called off.

"I would say we were really lucky. Had we reached even three or four minutes earlier, we probably would have been inside the mosque. This could then have been a massive incident," Mashud, a former Bangladesh captain, told journalists.

"We are very grateful that we were not caught within the crossfire, but what we saw was once straight out of a movie scene. We could see bloodstained people staggering out of the mosque.

"Maybe for roughly eight-ten minutes, we have been all throughout the bus and have been sitting with our heads bowed, simply in case somebody fires at us."

The bus carried 17 individuals of the staff with Liton Das, Nayeem Hasam and spin bowling coach and previous India spinner Sunil Joshi staying back on the lodge.

"This was once a type of accident that we would never be expecting nor want in any a part of the world. We are very lucky because we had numerous us, about 17 folks, within the bus. Soumya Sarkar was once additionally there, and we have been all heading to the mosque for prayers.

"Only two of the players had stayed back in the hotel, and rest of the squad had gone there. We were very close to the mosque, and we could see from the bus. We must have been about 50 yards from the mosque," said Mashud.

The avid gamers and strengthen personnel could hear gunshots as they feared for their lives throughout the bus. Minutes later, they mustered the courage to disembark and rush against the Hagley Oval stadium.

"When we realised that the shooters will have inflicted more damage if they'd found us throughout the bus , we took a collective determination to escape throughout the back gate.

"We ran or quickly walked out via that gate. Then we have been within the dressing room, and the local liaison people defined to us how shall we get out of there maximum safely to our lodge.

"It wasn't their fault, they tried their best according to whatever they are used to in their culture. Our players supported them a lot, with inputs on what was needed at that point of time. Our decision to get out was timely, because in videos we saw that people came out and kept shooting later."

Mashud said the staff's return plan to Bangladesh has been labored out.

"I think the players are okay, and the Test has been cancelled. They have told us and will send an official mail by 6:30 in the evening. Our plan to return has also been chalked out with the people in charge of logistics," said the executive.

Mashud said the avid gamers are sure to be affected after escaping demise through a whisker.

"It is natural to be affected. When you see something like a terror attack in front of you, and you see blood spilled in front of you, this will affect any human being. It wouldn't have occurred to us then that we would be safe later. Some of the boys inside the bus were crying as well, because they were all worried about how to get out of there."

He added that the avid gamers will stay throughout the lodge for now.

"At this level, it is necessary to not depart the lodge, because an incident like it will happen anywhere. We don't want to carry any memories of this incident. We have briefed everyone to have dinner on the lodge itself lately onwards. All the avid gamers are in combination in one room, and attempting our absolute best to distract ourselves through speaking about different issues.

"...we're lucky that if the avid gamers had either gotten off the bus later or long gone to the mosque earlier, it would were tricky to get out of there. When we have been in a position to get out of there, it was once as a result of the collective effort of the avid gamers," Mashud added.

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