The Tigers’ win against host Sri Lanka in the Nidahas T20I tri-nation series came at a crucial moment for Bangladesh cricket. Such kind of a victory with proper attitude will definitely give some confidence to the Bangladesh tent after a turbulent last couple of months.
Yes, this is only a T20I win, and not a series triumph. Bangladesh might even perhaps lose their remaining two matches. Probably the Tigers may not even win the tournament. More importantly however, the way Bangladesh chased down the total showing positive intent was the most significant positive from this match. This is perhaps the “positive intent” which stand-in skipper Mahmudullah had indicated during the two-match T20I home series against the Lankans.
The way Bangladesh executed the plans and reached their destination, this killer instinct was missing in the last few games. Batsmen showed a lot of courage and romped to their destination, despite chasing a difficult total. Chasing a 200-plus score in Sri Lanka against Sri Lanka is not easy at all. Statistics prove that. But the controlled aggression of Liton Das and Tamim Iqbal, and masterful finishing by Mushfiqur Rahim exhibited the maturity at the middle.
Bangladesh need to display just this kind of attitude in future. Liton and Soumya Sarkar have the quality, no doubt, that’s why they are here in the national team. But the world needs to know about their powerful performances in the international stage more often in order to certify their talent. Liton has quite a few such similar innings in the Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League, but the international stage is different.
Saturday was perhaps the perfect stage for him to show his batting ability. Now it’s time for Liton to concentrate more on his skills and develop himself to reach the next level.
As for Mushfiq, the little pocket dynamite showed his class once again. Not many days ago, this little fella was considered “not suitable” for the shortest format of the game and had been considered of facing the axe from the team. But his hitting ability in the last game proved that he can be useful in this format as well. In the second last over, when Mushfiq slogged a big sixer over mid-wicket against Nuwan Pradeep, he looked calm and composed.
Perhaps the painful loss against India at the 2016 World T20 was going through his mind. Mushfiq celebrated too early during that game as Bangladesh eventually fell agonisingly short by just one run.
But this time around, Mushfiq celebrated only after hitting the winning run, and what a celebration it was. Well done Mushi, but still many more miles to go.
After winning the match, a few Bangladesh players rushed to the field and celebrated wildly. Indian commentator Sanjay Manjrekar said, “It seems like Bangladesh have won the tournament”. No, Bangladesh have not won it yet, it’s just another T20I win, but considering the Tigers’ poor T20I record and the past few months, this victory was much needed for Team Bangladesh.
Now it is time to capitalise on this win. Win or lose, it’s the proper approach and process which matter in the cricket field. You might lose some games in the cricket field, but proper application will bring you long-term success. And that’s what Bangladesh need to do at the moment, keeping in mind the upcoming 2019 World Cup and 2020 World T20.