Bangladesh under Mashrafe bin Mortaza’s leadership won the ODI series 2-1 and the Tigers held onto the momentum to win the T20I series by the same margin under the captaincy of Shakib al Hasan
Opener Tamim Iqbal credited ODI skipper Mashrafe bin Mortaza for the turnaround the side enjoyed during the recently concluded tour of the West Indies. Tamim at the same time brushed aside the tricky wickets and the unfriendly Dukes ball as the reasons behind Bangladesh’s disastrous outcome in the two-match Test series against host Windies last month.
Following the Tigers’ humiliating 2-0 series defeat, which included the debacle of being dismissed for just 43 runs in the first innings of the first Test, conditions, wickets and the ball were put as defense by the Bangladesh cricketers. However, Tamim differed from the opinions and have put the blame on the team for not being able to execute as per the plans.
The left-handed batsman praised the way the side bounced back to win the ODI and T20I series and credited Mashrafe for the turnaround. Bangladesh under Mashrafe’s leadership won the ODI series 2-1 and the Tigers held onto the momentum to win the T20I series by the same margin under the captaincy of Shakib al Hasan.
“We were mentally down after the Test series. We knew the ODI series was crucial for us and Mashrafe worked brilliantly in pulling up the team when he joined us for the ODI series. He might have not batted or bowled for the others but he worked beautifully to change the mood in the team. He brought positivity in the team to get out from the Test series loss, this was a big reason behind our success,” said Tamim to the media at Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka Thursday.
While the majority of the national cricketers are on post-series and Eid-ul-Adha holiday, Tamim is busy practising in the nets. For the last two days, wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim was also found working on fitness at the home of cricket.
The Asia Cup 2018 in the UAE is Bangladesh’s next assignment and it seems Tamim and his colleague Mushfiq is in no mood to get relaxed.
“The first two matches (against Sri Lanka and Afghanistan) are important for us to qualify for the second round. We are preparing for that, it will not be wise to directly aim of playing the final or finish as champion. We first need to win the two group matches and focus on those,” Tamim explained.
Bangladesh in Group B have Sri Lanka and Afghanistan as opponents. In Group A, India, Pakistan and a qualifier will compete for the second round of the six-nation regional competition. Runners-up of the last two editions, Bangladesh will begin their campaign against the Lankans.
“Asia Cup is a big tournament and it is tricky. All the teams here are good. Our job is to play good cricket and we will not be playing a team that we have not played before. We have played against all the teams and we have won against them on our day,” said Tamim.