Published on January 23rd, 2018 | by Faisal Caesar


A commendable victory for Bangladesh, but……

“Bangladesh, who have been a dominant force in this Tri-series so far, should not overlook the wayward batting display of their batters. The repeat of such a display might cost the Tigers badly in upcoming matches”.

Yet another failure of Anamul Haque brought Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal together at the crease and for one and half hours, the spectators present at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium only enjoyed Bangladesh’s serene progress on a track where the spinners had the ingredients to test the batsmen. But, both Tamim and Shakib handled the spinners with authority. The scoring rate was slow but steady. Bangladesh were well poised to post around 270 to 290 on the board and the kind of batsmen was waiting in the dressing room, the possibility of 300 runs could not be ruled out.

All of a sudden, Shakib’s whims showed up and was stumped while trying to play a rash shot against Sikandar Raza.  In the blink of an eye, Bangladesh were reeling at 170 for 8 with seven overs still remaining. The dismissal of Shakib triggered a collapse and for a while, the cries of Zimbabweans filled the still air.

Graeme Cremer and Sikandar Raza bowled well as they made the ball to turn and bounce, beat the bat several times while Kyle Jarvis’ experience proved handy enough as he pitched the ball more on the areas where the bounce kept low and confused the batters, but with the deliveries by which they fetched wickets were not at all wicket-taking ones.

Mushfiqur Rahim attempted a mistimed sweep shot against a fuller delivery from Raza and holed out to short fine leg. Mahmudullah played a wrong-one with a half-stride forward and was trapped lbw. Tamim followed the Shakib way to walk for the pavilion. Sabbir Rahman holed out for short midwicket without exhibiting enough footwork. Nasir Hossain attempted his favourite late-cut too early to get caught behind – Bangladesh slid rapidly in the quicksand and had Mustafizur Rahman and Sanzamul Islam not flexed their muscles, Bangladesh might not have crossed 200.

Even though anything under 200 runs would not have triggered a panic attack as Mashrafe Mortaza and his boys came out all guns blazing with the ball and devoured Zimbabwe. It was a ruthless display by the home team where Mashrafe got the line and length spot on with the new ball and then Shakib’s arm-balls and accuracy stranglehold Zimbabwe in the first power-play.

When Fizz started his spell, life became tougher for Zimbabwe. Fizz was at his brilliant best tonight as he swung the ball away while bowling from round the wicket and made it come back from over the wicket. Then he pitched on that don’t-know-zone to Raza, who looked threatening enough, who failed to negotiate it more often.

Bangladesh handed Zimbabwe a 91-run defeat, but such a comprehensive victory must not mask the loopholes of Bangladesh middle order which showed signs of the older days when Bangladesh used to collapse after stitching a solid partnership.

Bangladesh batting was wayward

One cannot say confidently, today’s’ performance has been neat, but there were points to ponder for the home team’s think tank and that is their lack of discipline when the partnership between Tamim and Shakib broke.

In a 50-over match, the middle overs are a very important phase. Discipline is a must in this phase to carry on the good work scripted by the previous batters and kept the situation under control with composure so that panic doesn’t show up. Any rush of blood in this phase can spoil everything and Bangladesh’s middle and lower-middle-order batters killed the festive mood with their wayward batting display.

No team enjoys a good day at the office every day, but the best teams work on the mistakes after having a bad day. Even if they win, they don’t forget to learn from their mistakes and Bangladesh, who have been a dominant force in this Tri-series so far, should not overlook the wayward batting display of their batters. The repeat of such a display might cost the Tigers badly in upcoming matches.

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Faisal Caesar is a doctor by profession and passionate cricket writer. He is the cricket editor of Cricketsoccer.

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