Bangladesh have lost quite a few close games against India in recent years and there will be pressure today as well. Mashrafe believes the players need to be calm ahead of such a crucial tie and focus on their game-plan
Bangladesh skipperMashrafe bin Mortaza admitted Tigers need to play their best cricket in every department - bowling, fielding and batting - to beat a strong opponent like India.
Bangladesh currently have seven points from seven games so far and need to win their remaining two matches in the tournament to secure a spot in the semifinal stage.
Their first hurdle is against India at Edgbaston today before facing Pakistan at Lords on Friday. Mashrafe believes Bangladesh have the ability to still qualify to the last four but to make it, they have to play their best cricket against India today.
“There are two matches left for us and we have to play our best cricket to qualify for the semifinal. It will be great if we can manage to win. Both the sides are very strong; India are a very strong and balanced side and a we have to play hard and be 100 percent in every department. Good thing is that, we are still in the tournament and we need to win to stay alive. But tomorrow (today), we have to play a lot better than what we have played so far,” said Mashrafe during the pre match press conference at Edgbaston yesterday.
“Whoever we win against, I have never thought that we were ahead in one area. It has always been a combined effort of good batting, fielding and bowling. We batted well against Australia but our bowling was not up to the mark. The same goes for the England match as well. Against India, we have to perform clinically in every department to win against them. If we do well in all sectors, then, we can of course win,” he added.
Indian spinners were hammered in their last match as their spin duo Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav conceded a massive 160 runs in 20 overs with just one wicket. England were successful against these spinners by attacking them but Mashrafe believes Bangladesh need to stick to their own game-plan to defuse the spin-threat from India.
“I think Indian spinners are doing a lot better in the last two-three years. We can’t think we will get success by following England’s game-plan tomorrow (today). We need to do what we were doing throughout the tournament. Our batting has been good so far and we have to continue that. Probably, we could have done better against New Zealand but other than that, our batting is in good form. Now, we have to play with our own plan and keep continuing our good form in terms of batting,” the Bangladesh skipper said.
Bangladesh have lost quite a few close games against India in recent years and there will be pressure today as well. Mashrafe believes the players need to be calm ahead of such a crucial tie and focus on their game-plan.
“It is very important to stay cool. There is a lot of hype about the match; it can become difficult and create extra pressure for each player. It is important to do the things we do on the field properly. “Initially, nerves will play a role, but we have to settle down quickly. So, it will be crucial to control our nerves in the beginning. It is better to stay away from outside pressure as well,” said Mashrafe at the presser.
The match between Bangladesh and India will start on 10:30 pm local time and 3:30 pm Bangladesh time.