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Bangladesh 4th, but make a mark

  • Published at 08:55 pm August 7th, 2016
  • Last updated at 09:20 pm August 7th, 2016
Bangladesh 4th, but make a mark

It was not confirmed till the last moment whether Bangladesh will participate in their second ICC Trophy in 1982. But it turned out to be yet another memorable adventure for the players on their second trip to England.

The country's political situation was unstable after Hussain Mohammad Ershad seized power and became president in March 1982 after a bloodless coup. The cricket though had less than three months to prepare for the tournament and at the last minute, the new president handed the Bangladesh Cricket Control Board enough money to buy air tickets and manage the tour.

This was Bangladesh's second participation in as many ICC Trophy tournaments, and this time they made it to the knockout stage for the first time. Sixteen nations took part in the 1982 ICC Trophy. Bangladesh were in Group B and won four out of seven matches to reach the semi-final.

It was a great experience for the Bangladeshi players having played 26 practice matches during the tour, 17 of which were played before their opening game against West Africa. Yousuf Rahman ended as the team's highest scorer with 214 runs in six games while off-spinner Anwarul Amin was the highest wicket-taker with eight scalps.

Bangladesh started off the tournament on a high after Gazi Ashraf Hossain Lipu scored a brilliant 77 which laid the foundation for the challenging total of 246/10 in 59.4 overs and later pacer Samiur Rahman picked up three wickets to ensure a 76-run win at West Bromwich.

In the second game Bangladesh beat East Africa in a low-scoring affair after being bundled out for just 143 runs. They managed to win by 26 runs with Yousuf taking three wickets.

However the tournament was hampered due to rain. Bangladesh's next two matches against Singapore and Fiji were abandoned. And the most interesting match of the tournament for Bangladesh was perhaps against Malaysia where they won the game by just one run after rain forced a 25-overs a side affair.

Bangladesh posted 122/7 in 25 overs with Raqibul Hasan top scoring with 35 runs and later they managed to restrict their opponent to 121/6 with the maverick Rafiqul Alam taking two wickets.

However Bangladesh lost to Bermuda by seven wickets after being all out for just 67 runs but came back strong in the next game, beating the Netherlands by six wickets to reach the semi-final.

And all of a sudden Bangladesh were just two wins away from their maiden World Cup appearance. But it was a tough ask as they had to beat a strong Zimbabwe side in the semi-final. Eventually Bangladesh lost the game by eight wickets after Zimbabwe chased down their modest 125 runs in 29.3 overs losing just two wickets.

But still Bangladesh were eyeing the third place battle against Papua New Guinea to finish their ICC Trophy mission on a high and despite some individual heroics Bangladesh were unable to win that match too.

Captain Shafiqul Haq Heera making three stumpings and Yousuf smashing a magnificent 115 were highlights but it wasn't still enough.

The dream to participate in the World Cup was still far but the Bangladesh squad for the 1982 ICC Trophy definitely laid the pillar to believe that one day Bangladesh will play the World Cup sooner or later.

Bangladesh's 1982 ICC Trophy squad: Anwarul Amin, Dipu Roy Chowdhury, Gazi Ashraf Hossain, Jahangir Shah Badshah, Nazim Shirazi, Omar Khaled, Rafiqul Alam, Raqibul Hasan, Sadrul Anam, Samiur Rahman, Shafiqul Haq Heera, Tanjeeb Ahsan Saad, Yousuf Rahman

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