It was a magnificent journey for Bangladesh in the 2017 Champions Trophy, reaching the semi-finals in an ICC event for the first time in history.
The Tigers exhibited some fearless cricket, especially against New Zealand last week at Sophia Gardens in a group stage match where they came back brilliantly from a precarious position of 33 runs for the loss of four wickets, chasing 266.
Despite losing against India in the last four at Edgbaston on Thursday, Mashrafe said they should be proud of their achievements in this tournament.
However, he informed that they need to work on the mental aspect in order to get more results in their favour in the big stages.
“Yeah, obviously the boys should feel proud, but I think in a tournament like this, you have to be, I think, physically or skill-wise not too bad. Yes, we are coming up still. We need to learn so many things. But I think we have got to be a little bit more ready mentally to play this sort of match,” Mashrafe told the media after the India clash.
“I know once you are ready mentally, anything can be possible. I know next time I think the boys will learn, because they've been through the knock-out system. So if you can go through next time, hopefully the boys will learn how to get ready mentally,” he said.
The youngsters in the form of Soumya Sarkar, Sabbir Rahman and Mustafizur Rahman did not enjoy the best of times in this tournament.
When asked if these players should be persisted with in future, Mashrafe said it's important to give them the licence so as to get the best out of them.
“The youngsters may not have been able to play as they were expected but you must have seen even before coming to this tournament, the youngsters played their part. I think it’s important to give them the license to play and gain experience as you can’t buy experience, which you have witnessed in this tournament,” said Mashrafe.
“And at the same time, when it comes to discarding some of them for their performances, I think we should also think about who are going to replace these boys. So I believe that these boys will get more experienced when we return here for the 2019 World Cup and by then, they will have enough experience,” he added.
When queried if he will continue to play till the 2019 World Cup, Mashrafe said he is yet to think about his future as he is enjoying the game.
“I haven't decided. I mean, I'm still enjoying, so maybe, maybe not. You never know. I have not thought about it. So as long as I enjoy it, I'll keep playing,” he said.