Those who make Star Sport

They say that every brick has a story to tell. While they may not be the red ceramic kind or the ones with rough edges that come straight out of those sad looking brick klins, they are no less durable. We are talking about the human bricks that have turned the Daily Star Sport as standard-setters, the people who never worked for recognition and are bind by a cement called unconditional love for sport. This is the profile section of that extended family.

The Daily Star Sport team of the late 90s

Rezowanul Haque Mustazir
Senior Sub-Editor
Age: Anywhere beyond 50
Year of joining DS: 1991
The longest surviving member of Star Sport came to the party after his introduction to the world of journalism as a reporter of a hot cine magazine. Affectionately called Mostafiz, Big Mush,… and what not! Once caused a minor scandal by sleeping over Brian Lara's then world record 375 considering the breaking news not important enough only to find it as the lead item in every other daily the next day except in the Star. But those days are long gone and the man from the village greens of Lalmonirhat now has strong opinions about sports and politics. For a while his relation with IT could have been compared to Madonna's love for Osama bin-Laden but now try getting his hand off that mouse. A fan of former US President Bill Clinton, Mustazir has that uncanny knack of concealing vital info like marriage and child birth and invariably bunks work on the last working day before the Eid-ul-Azha holidays in the pretext of buying the sacrificial cow. Big man with a spacious heart and the calming influence at Star Sport. Everybody's favourite punc-hbag. A loyal servant of Daily Star and has been here through all the changes.

Lenin Gani
A former Senior Sub-Editor. Now Sports Editor of the Daily New Age.
Age: Ageless!
Year of joining DS: 1993
Holds the proud record of being the first DS journalist to get mugged. Better still, the incident was covered in next day's edition of The Daily Star much to the delight of the victim and also the goons who ripped Gani off. He is probably the only British national (by birth) who is working for a local newspaper without a work permit but his ethnic origin possibly makes him immune from any legal hanky panky. Afterall where would the rest of the country be without us Sylhetis! Unfortunately his departure for New Age marks the end of Sylhet's representation at Star Sports (sigh!). A no-nonsense deskman with exemplary punctuality. At times daring thanks to his weapon of mass destruction a stainless steel flask, which he wielded threateningly at the driver of a giant inter-district coach after forcing the bus to pull over on Panthapath one night. The driver had apparently made the cardinal sin of not allowing the CNG-run three-wheeler Gani was on to overtake him. Supports Liverpool more from nostalgia than for any remote evidence of charm in their football.

Syed Ashfaqul Haque
Former Sports Editor, News Editor at present
Age: Handsome late 30s!
Year of joining DS: 1993
A male chauvinist and a vehement anti equal-rights activist once upon a time. His macho days effectively ended when he tied the knot. As Star Sport's first computer literate, he enjoyed the privilege of playing Formula 1 while the others watched with envy. He then realised that playing Prince of Persia alone was no fun so he taught a couple of others how to operate the PC and thus the Daily Star entered the network age!

Made quite a name for himself by lifting the inaugural (and only) Daily Star Open badminton competition singles title. Please note fixtures were taking place when the players were supposed to work. Successfully completed his time as Sports Editor before rather reluctantly accepting an offer to leave his beloved sports for moving up the ladder.

Mohammed Al-Amin
Sports Editor
Age: Static at 36
Year of joining DS: 1993
When a young Al-Amin left for Japan without letting his mom know as if he was just going over to Keraniganj from Gandaria, odds were that he would live the rest of his life on sushi and uncooked sea reptiles. But he returned home probably feeling that the streets of Tokyo were not trendy enough to match his unmistakable Old Dhaka tastes and became a sports reporter. He had an injury-halted promising (so he says!) football career, a jingoistic affection for a famous club in black and white and a cricket team which last won a mentionable away Test series two decades ago and a Notredame College background to show for and he instantly gelled. Staying true to the royal image of the men of his locality, he keeps a full pocket and is seldom shy of entertaining a herd of hungry fellow journalists. Amazingly casual. Having lost his own, one day he borrowed his younger brother's motorbike and went to the Bangabandhu National Stadium. He then took an auto-rickshaw to office and upon reaching remembered that he had left the bike behind. Now maintains a ratio of losing atleast one mobile phone per year. Has given up on motorbikes and drives a Maruti Suzuki these days and volunteers to give people a lift as long as there is breathing space left inside his car.

Rabeed Imam
A former Senior Sub-Editor. Now Editor of the
Age: Married but appears still in his teens
Year of joining DS: In-and-Out from 1995
Easily could have been a film star or a polished Army officer but his love affair with a now declining Caribbean cricket team and obsession with a toothy Brazilian goal-machine landed him as a career sports journalist. He also embarked on a secret mission to try his luck on the silver screen and played the role of a Police officer, but unfortunately the shooting of that drama ended the same day it started.

One of the few writers who made sports reporting so beautiful, Rabeed holds the unique distinction of taking an interview of great West Indies fast bowler Curtly Ambrose. It was a dream come true for Rabeed, who with a boyish smile on his face, as he always loved to reflect on that emotional encounter with King Curtly that started with a Caribbean accent -- "Maan, I will give you two minutes".

He captained The Daily Star cricket team on a number of occasions, but his BKSP connection counted for little as his side always ended up at the receiving end when it came to the championship game.

Hasan Masood
Former Sports Reporter, BBC's Special Correspondent at
Age: Do celebrities ever tell their age?
Year of joining DS: 1995
An ex-Bangladesh Army captain, Hasan Masood caused a stir in the jungles of Gazipur when naked to the waist on a chilly winter night, he interrupted the howling foxes by singing 'Purbo Digante Shurjo Utheche' with a harmonium clinging to his belly. That was when the Star Sport gang had gone on a camping trip on the eve of the Victory Day at a remote spot called Bahadurpur. What prompted that outrageous act of bravado is another story. A limitless source of energy and never stops at one place for more than a minute. A spontaneous singer who embraced stardom with his very first acting (who was acting?) role in the hit movie Bachelor and hasn't looked back. Moves about without inhibition and can approach complete strangers without a shadow of hesitation irrespective of language and nationality barriers. Before Bangladesh played Pakistan in the 1999 cricket World Cup, he landed a bet with the rest that he would perform a striptease inside the sports section if the Tigers win. Not in his wildest dreams did he foresee the eventual result. Did he strip? Well let's just say that he's not your shy type.

Architect Dr Nizamuddin Ahmed
Former Advisory Sports Editor
Age: Evergreen
Year of joining DS: 1995
Took over charge of Star Sport during a trying phase when it was without a leader. Positive, witty, upbeat and exudes energy. A master of time management as he somehow makes room to keep all his commitments. An all-rounder in every sense as he is an architect, a teacher, an urban planner, a columnist, an amateur golf and squash player and a scouts leader. His sporting affiliation is printed in black and white. Dr Nizam is also a former councilor of the Bangladesh Cricket Board.

Shah Md. Zakaria Simon
Senior Sub-Editor
Age: Doesn't have even half-an-ounce of fat on his body so he could be passed off as anything between 19 and 35.
Year of joining DS: 1996
He migrated to Dhaka as a teenager so that girls in Khalishpur (that's in Khulna) could miss him. At the Dhaka University he befriended all the young ladies of his class, tried to become more desirable by keeping his hair long and played the cool bohemian's role until one day he discovered that he was the only single guy around. Undeterred, he joined The Daily Star but unfortunately ended up at the male-only sports section. This was too much to take for a man who is moved by the music of Air Supply, Modern Talking, BoneyM and Foreigner and off he went to Cox's Bazar one fine day after his mother reportedly told him to bring something from the local bazaar. Although his wait for a life-partner has ended some years back, he still longs to meet Suchitra Sen and is planning his second trip to Kolkata. He has recently vowed to take home the PC he uses at office the day he leaves the DS because all his mp3 collection is stored there. He is highly sentimental about a cricket team that uses the term 'unpredictable' to justify all their losses.

Bishwajit Kumar Roy
Sports Reporter
Age: Pretends to be young but his balding head tells a different story.
Year of joining DS: 2003
Bishwajit sacrificed a career as a classical singer for sports journalism which stunned his sizable female fan base in Mymensingh. But the bespectacled flirt had already won over the girl of his dreams with his melodious voice and once the marriage formalities had been completed, there was no stopping Bishwajit from spending most of his time hanging out at cricket grounds in the name of duty. This also gives him the perfect excuse to avoid daily household chores. After an initial stint with UNB, Bishwajit arrived at Star Sport and it was soon apparent that his sources included basically the who's who of Bangladesh cricket. An amicable character who lives to see the day when all his positive hopes about the Tigers would come true. That's when he plans to call it a quits and register as a participant on Close Up 1.

Al Musabbir Sadi Pommel
Senior Sports Reporter
Age: Has fond memories of the sixties. So it's anybody's guess.
Year of joining DS: 2004
After a long fruitful association with The Independent, Pommel felt it was time to move to a place where his colleagues would share his exotic taste in DVDs and CDs. So he made the cross over via the Karwan Bazar underpass little knowing that he would be soon branded as the CD-holic. Star Sport's official medic by virtue of his couple of months spent at the Barisal Medical College as a freshman and to some extent for having a doctor wife. Sky Blue is the colour of his sporting ideologies so there are only two sides he is likely to back on domestic and international stages. Firm believer in the revival of local football and fails to see any light in Bangladesh's cricket. When in the mood, writes match reports of nondescript local fixtures that could leave wire service reports of Primera Liga or Serie A games looking pale in comparison. Very eager to promote women's football in the country.

The Daily Star Sport family also fondly remembers and acknowledges the contribution of its early days pioneers Afzal H Khan (first Sports Editor), Chandrashekhar Das (sporstwriter supreme who had injected a dash of modern English literature to the flexibility of sports writing), Syed Mamun, Mir Ashfaquzzaman, Biplab Zaman, Golam Saqlain and stringers Zayd Almer Khan, Dominic Bayano Tunon, Shayan, Iresh Zaker and all the others who had worked here. We also acknowledge the services of our regular columnist Shakil Kasem who has these days decided to stay away from cricket.

A PC ARRIVES: The first computer at sports desk creates child-like enthusiasm in almost everyone. No one knows how to operate but before they learn to use it, they can already play Formula One on it.

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