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Mashrafe: Mental preparation key for Champions Trophy

  • Published at 08:23 pm April 25th, 2017
Mashrafe: Mental preparation key for Champions Trophy
Bangladesh will leave here for the training camp in Sussex on Wednesday ahead of the tri-nation series against host Ireland and New Zealand and the 2017 Champions Trophy. The tri-series will be played from May 12-24 before the eighth edition of the Champions Trophy gets underway on June 1. ODI captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza on Tuesday interacted with the media before departing for the UK, informing that their mission in the eight-team Champions Trophy will not be an easy one. The Tigers will take on host England and trans-Tasman rivals Australia and New Zealand in Group A. “Realistically, it is going to be a difficult tour. The Champions Trophy won't be easy when you look at our opposition. We have defeated England in their conditions. We beat Australia in Cardiff once and, although they are in the past, I think it is still possible to play well there. A lot will depend on how we prepare,” Mashrafe told the media in Mirpur's Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium. “The camp will give us an idea about the pitches. Weather changes quickly in the early part of the English summer. We had a good World Cup after an early camp in Australia in 2015 but the same didn't pan out in 2016 when we prepared for the New Zealand tour," he said. The Tigers will spend almost two months away from home so fatigue is also a probable concern. Regarding this issue, Mashrafe said, “This is not the first time we are embarking on such a long tour. But we do face problems at the end of such tours as far as fatigue is concerned. History tells us that we have a really bad session after a good one in the latter part of a tour.” According to the “Narail Express”, it is important to keep the morale of the cricketers high in order to overcome the fatigue factor. “Maybe in Australia (during the World Cup) we didn't feel too bad as we were always in the hunt. Winning in the early stages could help us fight fatigue, which we can start off in Ireland. It is important to keep everyone together, in our group of 17-18 players, especially those who won't go through a good time in the early stages. Keeping them like a family is important,” he said. Mashrafe said the tri-series in Ireland will be vital, keeping in mind the ICC's ODI team ranking, and that they are targeting nothing but wins against the Irish and the Kiwis. “Obviously we will play for a win. I don’t know what others think but I think we will go there to win. There are a lot of calculations and if we can win there, it will help us for the Champions Trophy. But if that doesn’t happen, the pressure will mount. I think if we can’t get the mental preparation right, everything else will be difficult,” he said.
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