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24 October, 2018 12:31:57 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 24 October, 2018 07:51:45 AM
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Tigers wary of Zimbabwe backlash

Mash urges batsmen to be more proactive to wrap up the series
Syed Mohammed Pithu, Chattogram
Tigers wary of Zimbabwe backlash
Bangladesh cricketers Mehidy Hasan (L), Fazle Mahmud (C) and Nazmul Islam attend a training session ahead of the second ODI match against Zimbabwe at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram yesterday. AFP PHOTO

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza guarded against complacency, as he expected a backlash from Zimbabwe, who he thought wouldn’t like the three-match ODI series to be decided with one match left.

Mashrafe believed that the Southern African nations have the resources to challenge Bangladesh despite their meek surrender in the first ODI in which they tasted a 28-run defeat. Although the margin of the defeat looked slim, the fact was the visitors hardly could raise any prospect of a victory.

But Mashrafe pointed out Zimbabwe’s ‘never-say-die’ attitude, saying there is no scope to take them lightly still as the series is yet to be decided.

“There is no scope to take them lightly specially when all of their senior players are in the team at the moment,” Mashrafe said yesterday at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium which hosts the second match.

“We know if they get their rhythm back and if they play bring up their A game, it would be tougher for us. So we don’t want to give them any chance to comeback in the series. We will play with the same mentality with which we played the Asia Cup.”

Given Zimbabwe’s performance in the practice game and in the first ODI, Mashrafe’s extra cautiousness with Zimbabwe may appear to be exaggerated but he instantly made it clear why he was such alert.

“Remember we even lost the game to Hong Kong at this ground (in the World T20 in 2014). That is in our mind. So we are not willing to make any mistake.”

The captain however still indicates some experiment in the second game, saying they should be clinical in bringing up changes as the job is yet to be done.

“We just have to clinical, and find a way to win the series while we are trying out a few guys who also have to perform. We also have to consider that this is the series deciding game,” he said.

“We are on experiment in this series indeed. Fazle Rabbi couldn’t make run in the first match but he must get the opportunity. At the same time we have Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Abu Haider Rony in the wing. Ariful Haque has been with the team without any game for the last two or three series. We have to keep all those in our mind.”

Mashrafe batted for Fazle Rabbi who was out with naught on his debut, considering the fact that they shouldn’t give up any new players so easily. At the same time, he reminded that some external pressure also could make an impact on new players.

“Firstly it is the presence of camera. There is automatic pressure when a player knows that the match is being televised. There is also the home crowd, and of course our social media which also plays a part. Press, teammates and family are also there, but all of these things don’t really matter at the domestic level. Nobody even bothers finding out. So it is a huge difference.”

But the big positive side was 100 plus in opening stand in the consecutive two matches that too without Tamim Iqbal, Mashrafe said.

“We got 100 runs partnership in Asia Cup final and then in this match, that too without Tamim Iqbal. That’s massive. It’s the place which was the headache for us. Normally when someone gets hundred in opening position, a team could get past 300 but in our case it doesn’t happen. I am now worried about it. We need to ensure that we would make it 300 plus some next time someone gets 100 in the opening position.”

Mashrafe considered the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium as flat track as he expected 300 plus runs in the second game today.

“Though Mirpur wicket was uneven we expected 300 plus runs specially after the century of Imrul Kayes. The Chattogram wicket looked flat, so we expected a healthy score if we bat first. If we bat later, and if there is dew, I think batting will be easier.”

EA

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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