Cricketers tweet reactions on Christchurch mosques attack

Bangladesh cricket team leaves New Zealand after escaping death in Christchurch attack

Bangladesh cricket team forced to flee Christchurch Mosque after shooting incident

The team was in Christchurch for a test match against New Zealand on Saturday and were taking a break from practice to join in the Friday prayers at the mosque.

The ghastly terror attack at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand on Friday has killed more than 40 people and numerous have been injured. The players and some support staffers were on their way to the Al Noor Mosque, less than a mile from Hagley Oval, when they saw signs of the unfolding carnage.

The team arrived at the mosque after a news conference for their upcoming match, which has now been canceled.

Bangladesh opening batsman Tamim Iqbal said it would be hard for the national cricket team to overcome the shock of narrowly escaping the shooting.

According to Bangladesh's leading newspaper "Daily Star", Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hassan said that as the players had gone through such a traumatic experience, they required a break from cricket.

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New Zealand Police confirmed they had responded to shots fired in central Christchurch at around 13:40 local time (00:40 GMT).

At least one gunman killed 49 people and wounded more than 20 during Friday prayers at two New Zealand mosques in the country's worst ever mass shooting, which Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern condemned as "a terrorist attack".

"I can say that everything will change after this incident. I can not describe what is going inside us, what we have seen", he added.

The Bangladesh team, that was in the close vicinity of the attack, narrowly escaped it.

Team performance analyst Shrinivas Chandrasekeran, on Twitter, said "Just escaped active shooters".

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She said neither the gunmen nor the suspected accomplices were on any terrorist watchlist in New Zealand or Australia. Muslims account for just about one percent of New Zealand's population.

"In future, whenever we send our cricket team overseas we will do that after examining and reviewing the security matters of the host countries", Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said Saturday, according to the state-run news agency BSS. The test match in Christchurch was the first to be canceled since 2002, when a match between Pakistan and New Zealand in Karachi was called off after a terrorist bombing in the city.

At the Singapore Airlines check-in counter, players of the Bangladesh cricket team all looked serious and edgy.

Bangladesh cricketer Tamim Iqbal labeled the incident as a "frightening" experience on Twitter. Stay safe and strong, New Zealand.

Wicket-keeper Mushfiqur Rahim also described the scenes of panic, saying the team had been "lucky" to escape the violence. New Zealand Cricket's thoughts were with Christchurch and people affected by the shootings.

"If we were there three to four minutes earlier, we would have been in the mosque, massive thing might have happened", he said.

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Leading New Zealand players voiced their shock at what took place with captain Kane Williamson posting in Instagram: "Like the rest of New Zealand, I am struggling to understand what has happened today".

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