Bangla struggle to make impact

Bangla struggle to make impact


Rare spark: Tamim Iqbal in action against India. Reuters

This lack of consistency has always been the bane of Bangladesh cricket, hindering their progress to the big league even after entering international cricket some 23 years ago.
In stark contrast, Sri Lanka, the one-time punching bag, had made their entry into world cricket in the mid 70s and they matured enough in the next two decades to win a World Cup. Dav Whatmore’s role in the success of Lankans has been well-documented, but the Australian could not exactly repeat the miracle with Bangladesh.

Agreed, ‘The Tigers’ reached the second round of the 2007 World Cup and some young talent like Mohammad Ashraful, Shakib al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim have emerged, but they still struggle to register wins at a consistent rate. “If you look at it, it is harder to win matches against Bangladesh these days. They are no mere pushovers now, and they are also not afraid of the big guys now. And it is up to them to graduate to the next level from where they stand now,” Whatmore said.

Their progress to the next level depends a lot on how fast they master the art of finishing a game. Bangladesh, after a putting a huge 296 on the board, had a golden chance on Thursday to shock India after reducing them to 51 for three inside the first 10 overs.

Instead of going for the kill, Bangladesh strangely spread the field out making it easy for MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli to take the board forward without any pressure. Skipper Shakib al Hassan admitted it was a mistake from his part and hoped his team will perform more consistently in the days to come.

“I can’t contradict the fact that we are not a consistent unit. But then it is an element we need to acquire through constant effort and dedication. It is our main goal now, and hopefully things will fall in place for us,” Shakib said. The all-rounder also hoped that they will get more chances to play with top nations.

“Now we are playing often with Zimbabwe and some other nations. We win most of these matches, but if you play against big nations on a more regular basis, our cricket will improve more. The experience of playing against nations like India, Sri Lanka and Australia is very valuable,” he said.

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