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Dhaka Tribune

What next for BCB after World Cup debacle?

If the BCB doesn't wake up from its slumber and take some bold steps then more catastrophic results are awaiting Bangladesh cricket

Update : 13 Nov 2023, 09:47 PM

Bangladesh’s horrible World Cup performance has shocked the whole nation as they managed to win just two games and lost seven, all by convincing margins.

More than anything, the manner of those defeats was more frustrating as, if anyone checked the scorecards, they would find Bangladesh did not even put up a fight.

Not just in two or three matches, but in each and every single clash, it was complete and utter submission.

This World Cup has shown and exposed Bangladesh’s shortcomings in One Day International format in front of the cricket world.

The world event laid bare just how superior the opposing teams are in ODIs right now compared to the Tigers.

But the question is, how does a side go from playing good cricket just a few months ago, where they finished third in the World Cup Super League standings ahead of some heavyweights, to completely losing its charm, and act like a clueless and rudderless team all of a sudden?

Afghanistan’s displays have been highly praised in this World Cup as they played brilliant cricket overall.

The Afghans were well and truly in contention for the semi-finals until a once-in-a-lifetime Glenn Maxwell innings put them out of the running.

Even efforts from the Netherlands all through the tournament were praiseworthy.

What excuses do the Bangladesh cricket team actually have for their failure?

Having mentioned teams like Afghanistan and the Netherlands, is their cricket board more powerful and rich?

Do they have a bigger and more renowned coaching panel than Bangladesh?  

Truth be told, the disastrous results Bangladesh have suffered, it was kind of inevitable.

After all the drama and fiasco that unfolded before an important event like the World Cup, it was coming.  

Obviously, skipper Shakib al Hasan and head coach Chandika Hathurusingha have to take the blame.

However, the blame for the World Cup disaster should not only be limited to the coaches, staff and players, for the Bangladesh Cricket Board too should be held accountable.

There were many issues brewing just before the mega event, but proper steps were not taken to solve them.

When the two superstars and biggest performers for Bangladesh in the last 15 years, Shakib and Tamim Iqbal were having issues between them, what action, or more appropriately, what “proper” steps were actually taken?

It was like a soap opera which eventually haunted Bangladesh cricket.  

Now what has happened is in the past, it cannot be undone.

Bangladesh’s World Cup campaign has gone down as a debacle and cannot be erased from cricket history.

Now the most important question is, what next?

What will the BCB do to get Bangladesh cricket back on track again?

Before the 2019 World Cup, there were a lot of expectations too but Bangladesh team failed to meet them and finished eighth.  

Former head coach Steve Rhodes was made one of the scapegoats then, and given the sack immediately after the team returned.

This time as well, Bangladesh concluded their journey at lowly eighth.

On paper, it’s the same but this time around, it was abysmal.

Who will be the scapegoat now? 

Finding a scapegoat, pinning all the blame on him, or even playing blame game and brushing things under the carpet after this horrific World Cup may bring more bad results in future.

Bangladesh only narrowly achieved qualification for the next global event, the 2025 Champions Trophy in Pakistan.

And qualification was actually dependent on results of other teams.

One shudders to think what would have happened had Bangladesh missed qualification.

If BCB think tank does not wake up from its slumber and take some bold steps then more catastrophic results are awaiting Bangladesh cricket.

Consider Zimbabwe and the West Indies, they missed the World Cup this time and even the next Champions Trophy.

The Windies, two-time 50-over and 20-over world champions, missing flagship tournaments is definitely a huge setback for Caribbean cricket.

If Bangladesh had missed the chance to qualify for the next marquee event, would Bangladesh cricket not have headed towards that same, risky path?

BCB should thoroughly investigate and plan a proper and long-term solution to halt the slide.

Winning few matches on low and slow Mirpur wickets is not the proper process for long-term success.

Remember the consequence Bangladesh team faced after winning back-to-back series at home against Australia and New Zealand just before the 2021 Twenty20 World Cup?

Those two series victories on Mirpur pitches - which were not upto T20 standard - created false expectation and confidence and eventually Bangladesh had a horrible T20 World Cup in Oman and the United Arab Emirates.

So winning games in Mirpur only is not a good sign of progress. 

Even current national team vice-captain Nazmul Hossain Shanto said after the Australia game that playing on good, sporting wickets is mandatory to get habituated to the recent playing style of ODI cricket.

Batters indicated that they know how to score 250-260 on Mirpur wickets which is often considered a winning total.

But on true pitches, like in this World Cup where they played across six venues all over India, they struggled to come even close to posting 330-340.

It’s high time for the BCB to investigate what actually happened behind this dreadful run of results, find the reasons, make proper plans for the future and most importantly, take action immediately rather than just talk and talk.

Since Shakib said prior to the World Cup that he will leave the ODI captaincy after the tournament, the process of rebuilding the team in a proper way should have been started already.

The Champions Trophy is not that far off, just 16 months away, so it’s time for action, proper action, rather than just talking and playing blame game.  

Otherwise, we have to be prepared for more miserable results in the next global event.

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