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Bangladesh's 'disinterested' players under scrutiny

Mohammad Isam

March 3, 2014

Comments: 34 | Text size: A | A

Mushfiqur Rahim defends one off the front foot, Bangladesh v Afghanistan, Asia Cup, Fatullah, March 1, 2014
Mushfiqur Rahim is not happy with the commitment shown by some of his players © AFP
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In the aftermath of Bangladesh's defeat to Afghanistan in the Asia Cup, the BCB's top brass has held separate meetings with the captain Mushfiqur Rahim, coach Shane Jurgensen and the national selection committee to identify problem areas within the team. The meetings took place following Mushfiqur's comments after the loss, when he questioned the motivation of some of his team-mates.

ESPNcricinfo has learned that Mushfiqur and Jurgensen identified four players for "looking disinterested during recent matches." Mushfiqur called for changes to the team but that may not be possible because the World Twenty20 squad has been finalised and replacements can be named only for injured players.

BCB president Nazmul Hassan and a couple of board directors attended the meetings but the players' identities were concealed.

"When we discussed the problems within the team, we asked the captain and coach about some players and they talked about how frustrating their body language has been," a BCB official said. "They looked like they were not in the field, the management told us. Both parties agreed on this at the meeting. There will however be no action taken by the board but the team management will decide on what to do with them."

Earlier in the day, each member of the Bangladesh team was called for one-on-one meetings with the management to understand why plans were not being executed properly. Several batsman are out of form, no bowler has inspired confidence and fielding standards have slumped.

After returning to the team for the Sri Lanka series, Anamul Haque has struggled for consistency, often following one impressive performance with poor ones. He made 77 against India in the Asia Cup, but only 1 against Afghanistan.

Shamsur Rahman has made only one fifty in seven innings since his Test hundred against Sri Lanka, and looked out of place against pace and bounce. Mominul Haque made 50 and 60 in his last three innings but Bangladesh needed him to push on. Nasir Hossain has been woefully out of form.

Nasir gave four chances in the last game but the Afghanistan fielders let them slip. He repeatedly tried to drive legspinner Samiullah Shenwari through mid-on, never quite middling it or finding the gap.

Abdur Razzak has experience but his bowling is without edge, and Rubel Hossain hasn't been able to lead the pace attack without a steady new-ball partner. The fielding has been poor too, with Bangladesh dropping at least one catch in the four of their last five games.

Mushfiqur's captaincy has seen better days. On two occasions, he released pressure just when Bangladesh needed wickets. Sri Lanka were 67 for 8 and Afghanistan 90 for 5 but Bangladesh allowed big partnerships on both occasions.

Some of the selection decisions have been difficult to understand. Mahmudullah was picked to replace the injured offspinner Sohag Gazi, despite having scored just six runs in three games. He had one 12-wicket haul in first-class cricket before the Sri Lanka series, but Mahmudullah remains a batting allrounder. Such changes can confuse players about their role and future in the team.

Bangladesh have matches against Sri Lanka and Pakistan left in the Asia Cup and only a short gap before the World Twenty20. They will be a nervous unit, particularly since the captain made it clear that a culling is afoot.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by wapuser on (March 8, 2014, 17:33 GMT)

I think BCB should consider the following:

1. While selecting the team, consider the suggestions of Mushfiq and the Coach. 2. Run a behavioural change program with some players as it seems like some of them have taken their positions for granted. I strongly believe that Shamsur Rahman is a prospect but needs a slap on the face to understand what is expected off him. 3. Bring in batting consultants for short assignments for a year where the consultant comes for 2 weeks bi-monthly. Ask BCCI if they can help us with VVS or Dravid for this job. Throw in Anamul, Tamim, Mominul, Nasir, Kayes, Sakib, Mushfiq, Mahmudullah, Ziaur, some other prospects under supervision and give them strict plans for a year long development program. 4. Plan properly for Rubel, Al-Amin, Robiul, Shafiul, Taskin, Ziaur & if possible send them to play in England for a season. Aminul Islam can definitely help these players with a place somewhere. Otherwise try to bring in Wasim Akram for short consultancies.

Posted by   on (March 4, 2014, 9:05 GMT)

If Bangladesh can do it why not India? Some players in the team are not delivering. It is high time to replace them.

Posted by   on (March 4, 2014, 7:26 GMT)

@Minhaz I think you are right. Since his appointment Bangladesh started to perform badly.

Posted by Malik_Murad on (March 4, 2014, 7:12 GMT)

BANG Team should not be blamed of showing poor form against AFGHNs. The reason being that AFGH showed superb performance against PAK and nearly took that match away from PAK before Umer Akmal showed the heroics. So the AFGHNs had all capability to beat the BANGD and it happened as expected.

Posted by Ramansilva on (March 4, 2014, 6:18 GMT)

Bangla team has only one international level cricketer. The rest are mediocre. It does not have good bowlers like Pakistan team or good batsmen like Indian team or good all rounders like Sri Lankan team. But they are very high headed and boastful. Until they learn to be humble when win and gracious in defeat, and respect the opposition they will be mediocre.

Posted by   on (March 4, 2014, 5:49 GMT)

14 years. around 45 tests serieses with all test countries.over 70 test . only 4 wins . bangladesh is enjoying test status only bec of the fans. its a shame a non-telented country like bangladesh is playing test cricket.imagine if Kenya, Ireland, or Afganistan had been given test status . where will they be ?

Posted by mondotv on (March 4, 2014, 5:46 GMT)

Strange comment from a Captain - surely it is his job to ensure that every player takes the field motivated and determined. I'm not sure if I'm reading between the lines but it seems like he might be saying there is something else going on... either way its his job to stamp out complacency.

Posted by Observer37 on (March 4, 2014, 5:24 GMT)

How can Bangladeshi supporters fail to support what the captain is trying to point out? Talking about his immaturity is nonsense! He is simply fed up with wasteful batting - lazy fielding - and inaccurate and average bowling from players who are paid to represent their country. Bangladesh will always be languishing near the bottom of the Test ladder because they lack the internal fortitude to graft under pressure and always feel the compulsion to hit out. In parallel to this they will always be vulnerable to achieving the odd ODI win (which satisfies the delusional Bangladeshi fans into thinking they have turned yet another corner) and on the flip side their cavalier approach to cricket will also allow just about any team from Club level up to be in with a chance to beat them. Bangladesh/Zimbabwe/Ireland - Annual tri-Series is what is needed for them.

Posted by bouncer709 on (March 4, 2014, 5:09 GMT)

Problem with BD team is there every batsmen is a bowler too, their player comes to team as batsmen and we see they are bowling too. Better to keep 4 specialist bowlers, 1 bowling all-rounder and 1 batting all-rouder. Let the batsmen concentrate on their batting. Against Afghanistan they missed the trick too, they have Zia-ur-Rehman a very good hitter, they should utilize him on different position match to match to derail the opposition bowling from their line & length.

Posted by   on (March 4, 2014, 5:04 GMT)

pak win and they have great bowling line up but decent batting lineup

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