The goal was big. The team prepared well beating Australia and New Zealand at home in two successive series. But the Tigers ended up losing the six of the eight matches they played in this year’s T20 World Cup.
Experts say the team played the World Cup with the absence of real team spirit.
Bangladesh’s two historic wins before the World Cup didn’t help them register a win even against Scotland who are a weaker side compared to experienced Tigers.
Bangladesh’s morale was hit hard when they lost two warm-up matches— against Ireland and Sri Lanka— ahead of the main event in Oman.
Before taking on Scotland in the first match in Round 1, Bangladesh’s captain Mahmudullah Riyad brushed aside the defeats in the warm-up matches.
But in the first match, Bangladesh were stunned by Scotland which had prompted the BCB president, Nazmul Hasan, to criticize the cricketers mercilessly. He blamed three seniors— Mahmudllah Riyad, Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan— for the defeat that seemed to have set the tone for the Tigers in this year’s T20 World Cup.
“There was a negative environment when Bangladesh lost the first match to Scotland,” Nazmul Abedeen Fahim, the former cricket development officer at BCB and the current cricket advisor at BKSP, told UNB.
A World Cup Bangladesh prefer to forget
“We needed to support the team at the crisis moment, but we failed to do that. They were never able to recover from the setback. We believe that the team has the ability to do well in the T20 format, but we didn’t get the team going neither in Round 1 nor in the next phase,” he added.
“A cricketer can execute his skill when he gets an easier condition. But when he has to face a tough opponent in a condition that he is not accustomed to, it gets hard for a player to perform. We went to the World Cup after winning some matches at home but the condition was not the same in the World Cup which hurt the confidence of our players,” he added.
Bangladesh registered the first win against Oman, and after that match, Mahmudullah took on the critics saying that the players don’t get to the field to lose a match.
He also said that they sometimes play taking painkillers. And, along with Mahmudullah, Mushfiqur also expressed his anger saying the critics should see themselves in the mirror.
Even the family members of some cricketers took part in this chaotic situation of Bangladesh’s World Cup campaign which ended as one of the catastrophic chapters of Bangladesh cricket.
“The fault is in our culture,” Fahim said. “It’s natural that when a player has to go through too much negativity, he won’t be able to perform at his best. The players missed a perfect mind-set that was required to perform well in the World Cup.”
The performance of Bangladesh’s head coach Russell Domingo also came under scrutiny. Former Bangladesh captain Mahsrafe Bin Mortaza, who has the experience of working with Domingo, compared him with the team by saying how the coach is different from a team boy if he is unable to suggest the captain a strategy during the break of a match.
A World Cup Bangladesh prefer to forget
Mashrafe took to his social media handle to criticize the coach. He also said that it seems the South African coaches who have no job came to Bangladesh, and the team became a rehabilitation centre for them.
BCB is now taking some drastic steps to come out of the situation they are in. As one of those steps, Khaled Mahmud has been added to the team management as the team director, the role he had played earlier.
Some sources hinted that Mohammad Salahuddin, former fielding coach of Bangladesh, was also approached by the BCB to join the coaching staff. Neither Salahuddin nor BCB said anything in this regard.
According to Fahim, Bangladesh players have the ability to bounce back from the current situation, and for that, the authority should consider preparing good wickets at home— a demand the experts have been asking for ages.
“We have to change our mind-set. We have assumed that we will not be able to win on challenging wickets. We have to change this attitude and prepare challenging wickets at home. Sometimes, you have to lose to gain bigger success. Now what is most important is to prepare challenging wickets at the domestic level so that the players can prove their mettle facing challenging situations,” Fahim concluded.
Source: United News of Bangladesh