The three day-long mental grooming session of the Bangladesh national cricket camp began at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday. The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) was very keen to muscle up the players’ mental strength and therefore, appointed life success coach Ali Khan, a Canadian of Bangladeshi origin, to help the current senior cricketers of the country to overcome their mental trauma.
Bangladesh’s performance at home so far in the World Twenty20, the Asia Cup and the series against Sri Lanka, was way below par and the players openly admitted their failure in handling pressure. Bangladesh has been the busiest team in the first quarter of the year and but yet could win only two T20s and managed a draw in a Test against Sri Lanka. The burden of expectation from all quarters saw the team crumble to its lowest ebb against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup and against Hong Kong in the ICC World Twenty20.
Those two embarrassing defeats along with their overall poor show on the pitch have shoved the players’ as well as the team’s morale further back as they now struggle to find their way up from this nadir of misery.
“We are working on the mental state,” said Ali. “One gets mental toughness from positive mental state. You cannot buy this from the market and install it. One needs to have control on it through focus, body language and language pattern. These three elements make the mental state right. We are doing some exercise with the cricketers with music and other things to take their confidence level to a higher state,” Ali explained.
Ali informed that the job on the first day wasn’t tough for him as his analysis of the players were based on following the players and their performance regularly.
“The one common issue I found was trouble with their mental strength. I had one-on-one session with Tamim Iqbal, Nasir Hossain and Mushfiqur Rahim and all of them had the same issue. They are not being able to hold onto the positive enforcement,” said Ali.
Ali also found insecurity as an issue among the cricketers but stated it to be a very normal and a positive thing. “One will never work hard if there is no insecurity but its harmful if that insecurity is hampering your work,” he added.
National spinner Abdur Razzak was among the 32 cricketers who attended yesterday’s session. The veteran spinner thinks it will be better for the cricketers to have such sessions on regular basis.
“One might get relaxed or demotivated playing too much of cricket. So this kind of sessions do help to get into tone mentally. I don’t know if this will have effect on the performance but will surely help mentally,” said Razzak.
The cricketers will have one more common session today before they head into one-on-one session which will continue till tomorrow. The women cricketers will also have a common session with Ali on April 27.