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Shakib raring for WC, says Rhodes

  • Published at 04:06 pm May 27th, 2019
Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes briefs the media in Cardiff Sunday Dhaka Tribune/Ali Shahriyar Amin

The Englishman also, Shakib, who regained his throne in the ICC’s all-rounder list for ODI, is determined to retain his supremacy.

Bangladesh head coach Steve Rhodes said all-rounder Shakib al Hasan is raring to go for the World Cup as he has a point to prove.

Shakib has been in good form with both bat and bowl as he performed well in the recently concluded tri-nation ODI series where Bangladesh became unbeaten champion.

Shakib, who did not feature regularly in this year’s Indian Premier League, had missed the final in Ireland on May 18 due to back spasm but later he practiced hard with the team for the preparation of World Cup. 

“Not playing that much in IPL gave him [Shakib] the opportunity to become fitter. He had a little injury problem when we were in Ireland. But it seems he is fit now. He is raring to go. He is looking forward to a wonderful tournament. I think he has a point to prove. He also thinks that way,” said Rhodes at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff on Sunday after their scheduled practice match against Pakistan had been called off due to inclement weather. 

The Englishman also said, Shakib, who regained his throne in the ICC’s all-rounder list for ODI, is determined to retain his supremacy.

 “He seems to be a little bit forgotten by missing some IPL games. But now he is back in the number one position at the all-rounder list of ICC ranking.  We think he belongs in that position. But Shakib has a point to prove that everybody else believes that too,” the coach said.    

Rhodes also gave an update on Mahmudullah’s injury problem as the right-hander is struggling to bowl for last few months due to muscle strain.

“Mahmudullah’s bowling progress is a little bit slow.  But we are very optimistic that he can be fit to bowl a few overs in the early stage of the World Cup. The good thing about his bowling is he doesn’t need to a lot of practice to bowl. He can role his arms and then can bowl few overs which is a good point,” said Rhodes. 

The tournament will be the fourth World Cup for captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza, Shakib, Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim, while Mahmudullah will be playing his third. 

Rhodes thinks the experience along with the blend of youth will give Bangladesh good chance to shine in the mega event.

“People keep telling that to win a world tournament, you need plenty of experience. We have got a wealth of experience in the squad considering four of them are playing their fourth World Cup one playing his third. They are very good and experienced players. I always listen to their opinions a lot. Yes, I am the coach but I always value their opinions and thought. They have vast experience. It will be an advantage for the team, because these players know what to do in pressure situations of the game,” coach concluded.