• Saturday, Jan 18, 2020
  • Last Update : 01:44 am

Mashrafe: No reason to lose hope

  • Published at 02:37 am September 22nd, 2018
Mashrafe
Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza briefs the media in the UAE in September AFP

Bangladesh still have two more games remaining in the phase, against Afghanistan Sunday and Pakistan Wednesday, and they need to win both to keep on track for a place in the final

Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza said there is no reason for his side to lose hope, bearing in mind that there are still two matches remaining for the Tigers in the Super Four phase of the Asia Cup. 

The Tigers were off to a losing start in the second round of the tournament, conceding a seven-wicket defeat against India at Dubai International Cricket Stadium Friday. 

Bangladesh still have two more games remaining in the phase, against Afghanistan Sunday and Pakistan Wednesday, and they need to win both to keep on track for a place in the final.

Bangladesh’s defeat had come after a batting failure, triggered by the departures of openers Liton Das and Nazmul Hossain Shanto.

It was a similar scenario when the side had played their last group stage game in the tournament, against Afghanistan in Abu Dhabi Thursday.

Mashrafe following the heavy Afghanistan defeat had emphasised on the importance of a good start but a repeat of the same mistakes just the following day seems the message from the captain is not having an effect on the batsmen.

“Actually we did not really want runs [in the early overs], not like we have to score 60 in the first 10 overs. We know that there are new balls from each end and you need to take time. In the recent past, if we were in a good situation – not losing wickets -- we tried to score 40-45 runs. We were even happy with 30-35. But with the fall of early wickets, if you see, ever since the West Indies tour, the middle-order always had to set up the game. If you keep asking this from the middle-order all the time it becomes difficult. As we have been saying for some time now, the middle-order will not score all the time. Ultimately, in such matches when two quick wickets fall, there is a lot of pressure on the middle-order. We have collapsed in two successive matches. But still I think that we are not out of the tournament. We have a chance to come back well. We have one day to regroup well and get ready for the next match,” said Mashrafe following the India game.

Mashrafe termed rash shots as the chief reason behind the recent debacles. 

Top-order batsman Shakib al Hasan’s manner of getting out on the day, despite the team being in a critical situation, was a clear indicitation as to how poor the Bangladesh batters were in the middle.

The left-handed batsman had hit a boundary, a sweep off left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja through square-leg, and forced India wicket-keeper MS Dhoni to station a man there. 

But shoddy batting by Shakib made him play a repeat shot, of the previous delivery, to a length ball outside off, only to get caught at square leg, who had just come in.

“The way we lost our wickets was not just because of the bowling. We lost wickets to so many rash shots. After losing two wickets, maybe we could have made a partnership, then we could have taken off. We couldn’t do that. It is disappointing, but we are not out of the tournament. There are two matches left, we have to be very positive, identify the mistakes and come back very hard,” said Mashrafe.