• Wednesday, Jul 17, 2019
  • Last Update : 08:45 pm

Tigers Army growing in number

  • Published at 02:13 am June 18th, 2019
Tigers
Bangladesh fans cheer their team during the World Cup match against the West Indies in Taunton Monday Dhaka Tribune/Md Manik from Taunton

The match between Bangladesh and the West Indies at Coopers Associate Ground in Taunton saw thousands of Tigers fans gather at the stadium before the match, and almost fill the entire gallery with red and green colors

Wherever Bangladesh play these days, fans always turn out in big numbers at the venues to cheer for the Tigers.

The match between Bangladesh and the West Indies at Coopers Associate Ground in Taunton saw the same as thousands of Tigers fans gathered at the stadium before the match, and almost filled the entire gallery with red and green colors.

A United States-based fan group came all the way long from California or around that region to support Bangladesh. 

The group, consisting 40 members, travelled to Taunton Monday to enjoy the game, and will also watch the next game of Bangladesh in Nottingham where they will play Australia.

All of them are Bangladeshis who now live in the US. 

Maximum members of the group travel to all across the globe to cheer for the Tigers in major ICC events.

Their journey to cheer Bangladesh in major events started in 2007 when the Tigers recorded their famous win against India in the World Cup, held in the West Indies. 

At that time, only seven people watched the game.

Then they came to Bangladesh in 2011 before going to Australia in the 2015 World Cup where they watched Bangladesh’s win over England, which took the Tigers to the quarter-final for the first time in an ICC event. 

They also came to England to watch Bangladesh’s participation in the Champions Trophy where the Tigers qualified for the semi-final.   

And this time around, they came to England again for the 2019 World Cup. 

The group is getting bigger and bigger over the years as this time, 40 fans came to enjoy the Tigers matches.

Prior to the 2019 World Cup, they designed their own jersey, with the symbol of a roaring tiger, and red and green hats.

“I have followed Bangladesh cricket since my childhood. First time I watched the game live was in 2007. It was the World Cup game against India in Port of Spain in Trinidad. Seven of us watched that match. After that, we have seen a few games in every World Cup - 2011 in Bangladesh, 2015 in Australia and now 2019 in the UK. We have also come to support Bangladesh in the Champions Trophy in 2017. In this year’s World Cup, we have come as a group of 40 people to support Bangladesh. We are attending [Monday's] match and will also attend the next game in Nottingham. Hopefully, Bangladesh will perform well,” said Dilruba Chowdhury, who lives in San Jose, California.

She works as a director of Agami Inc, an organization working to create a better future for the underprivileged children in Bangladesh. 

“We feel proud that Bangladesh are performing well in the world stage. We have followed Bangladesh cricket since our childhood, and now we have many things to cheer as our cricket team are playing well over the years,” said Iqbal Hossain, who once worked as a sports reporter in Bangladesh and is now residing in North Carolina.  

“We can express our love and affection to our nation by giving support to our national cricket team while watching the game live. In every World Cup since 2007 we have come to cheer our team. We buy our tickets whenever they’re given out. This time, we have come as a group of 40 people and the numbers will grow in coming years,” said Iqbal Yosuf, who designed their jerseys.

He is a Sisco system engineer who has been living in the US for the last 25 years.

Bangladesh chased down 322 against the Windies, and whatever happens in the remainder of the World Cup, the passionate fans will cheer their team loudly all along.