West Indies Mauls the Tigers at Will
There had been talk of introducing two-tier Cricket among the test playing nations—Bangladesh demonstrated at Mirpur on Saturday evening, why such discussions are relevant. On a humid evening at Shere Bangla Stadium in Mirpur, West Indies gave an all round display showing Bangladesh how Cricket should be played at the international level.
Before even the spectators settled in their seats, the Tigers had lost three wickets for one run on an absolutely placid surface. First it was Imrul Kayes, playing only his third delivery, who cut and edged to make it 1 for 1. Then Tamim, the only world class opener Bangladesh ever produced, chased and sliced the second ball he faced to third man—an absolutely irresponsible shot under any condition, and a sheer criminal offense at that stage of the game, when the other opener had already been gone.
Talking of irresponsibility, the worst was yet to come, Mohammad Ashraful, who seems to have a permanent place in Bangladesh side notwithstanding his performance, leaned back, opened the face of his bat and scooped the ball straight to second slip. That was only the fifth ball he was playing. It appeared, he wanted to test if the WI players can take an absolute dolly catch. One wonders why this man is even in the team, after his extremely poor record in matches after matches. He is one of the senior-most player of the team, has a pathetic average score, yet, the selectors keep him picking over promising youngsters—it is difficult to fathom!
Former skipper Shakib arrived with a mindset that he was going to put those upstart WI bowlers to their place. He viciously counterattacked, his first two boundaries were treat to watch,square on the off side, off Kemar Roach's round-the-stumps angling delivery. Then he tried to go across off Ravi Rampaul's over-the-stumps delivery, with his leg solidly planted at the crease. Without the slightest foot work, he simply edged the ball making it 28 for 4 for Bangladesh.
It seemed like de-ja-vu, when Bangladesh was all out for 58 in the world cup match against the WI. But the new captain Mushfiqur Rahim wanted to show his front line batsmen how batting is done, and he found a willing partner in the baby of the team, the newcomer Nasir Hossain.
If Bangladsh score of 220 had any respectability, it was solely due to the new captain Mushfiqur Rahim, who arrested the collapse from the other end and re-built the innings with Alok Kapali, Naeem Islam, and then Nasir Hossain. The captain top scored with 69, while Nasir made 50.Continued on the next page