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Dhaka Tribune

Nafees: Give credit where it’s due

Nafees said a big chunk of credit should also go to the game development department of the Bangladesh Cricket Board for setting up a successful model

Update : 10 Feb 2020, 11:07 PM

Former Bangladesh opener Nafees Iqbal said credit should be given where it’s due following the U-19 team’s triumphant campaign in the U-19 World Cup 2020.

The players and coaching staff are being widely praised for Bangladesh’s three-wicket (Duckworth/Lewis/Stern method) win against India at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom, South Africa Sunday. 

Nafees said a big chunk of credit should also go to the game development department of the Bangladesh Cricket Board for setting up a successful model.

BCB game development and its chairman Khaled Mahmud had set a roadmap right after finishing sixth in the 2018 U-19 World Cup.

A set of U-19 cricketers in these two years were given the opportunity to play 30 youth ODIs, among which they won 18 of them, against England, Sri Lanka and New Zealand.

Bangladesh U-19 went into the 16-team competition with high hopes as they had the second best win percentage, after India, for teams to have played 15 or more games.

“Bangladesh U-19 winning the World Cup is a statement that if the procedure is right, result will come – this is the basic. I think there were right people at right places. [Age level] Selectors have done a fabulous job. I have seen Hannan Sarkar work really hard putting this team up. I have seen Sujon bhai [Khaled Mahmud] to go to the ground and see how things are being run. He is a board director and can easily sit back in his room. But he went for the tougher option. We often see him being criticized on social media but only a few gets to see the effort that he really puts in behind his work. Now that the success has come, maybe not everyone will give him the credit. Those unaware of these facts should know how he works,” said Nafees to Dhaka Tribune Monday.

Captain of the Bangladesh U-19 team in the 2004 World Cup where the young Tigers finished as Plate champion, Nafees believes these set of cricketers should not be pushed into the national team right away.

“I think it will be early to put these players into the national dressing room now. They have just played U-19. International cricket is totally a different ball game. Players have to be more mature to deal with pressure, expectation, glamour and tougher opponents. What I have experienced while playing U-19 was it was more of a fun. National team requires to have a professional mindset,” said Nafees. 

“Yes there are players who can come straight from U-19 and perform at the highest level of the game but what I feel is if they are given more time to mature then they will be able to deliver better performances. Difference between players at U-19 level is not much. Joe Root, Jos Buttler all had played U-19 when I was part of it but they took a different stride when they went into the national team. So we need to look into this procedure too. We cannot take the chance of bringing in a new kid and put him away if he doesn’t deliver. It’s better to give them time before being considered for the national team,” said the former right-handed batsman.

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