Bangladesh v New Zealand, 1st ODI, Mirpur October 28, 2013

'4-0 will play on New Zealand's minds' - Mushfiqur


Mushfiqur Rahim, the Bangladesh captain, believes their 4-0 drubbing of New Zealand in 2010 would play on the minds of the visitors ahead of their three-match ODI series, starting on Tuesday.

The opening ODI in Mirpur will be their first meeting in limited-overs cricket since then and Mushfiqur said that just like South Africa always have the "C" word at the back of their minds, New Zealand, who have seven survivors from that tour, will be wary of that debacle from three years ago.

"It will have an influence," Mushfiqur said. "We are playing them (New Zealand) after three years, but it will be in their minds. They lost to us in our last series, and that too by a big margin. South Africa are such a big team but before every big game they are reminded of being chokers.

"A lot of things have changed in the last three years. Both our sides have changes in personnel and combination," he said. "We have more matured players. We have a big challenge ahead of us, so there's no point looking back."

In addition to the recent head-to-head advantage, Mushfiqur will also bank on his team that has a growing number of match-winners - Shakib Al Hasan was the Man of the Series in 2010, Tamim Iqbal showed great character in the second Test in Mirpur, while Mominul Haque and Sohag Gazi have been on a record-breaking sprees.

"We had a lot to gain as a team and individually from the Test series against New Zealand. We are confident, and we are a team that must be respected in our conditions," Mushfiqur said. "It won't be easy to beat them but it won't be impossible either. If we play to the best of our ability, we can beat them."

Spin is Bangladesh's main advantage, but Mushfiqur is wary of the impact dew might have during day-night matches in Bangladesh, particularly during this time of the year, and he is not shy of making necessary changes to the playing XI. They had one practice session under lights and found considerable dew coating the outfield from 7.30pm onwards.

"Dew can be a major factor, like it was against West Indies last year. We have plenty of spinners in the side but we don't want to end up bowling with a wet ball," he said. "We have options in our squad, and we may call up a three-man seam attack if we think dew will be too significant. As a result, the toss will be vital."

However, should they go in with two spinners and seamers each, Tamim Iqbal and Anamul Haque are expected to open the innings with Mominul Haque slotting in at No. 3. Mushfiqur, Shakib and Nasir could come up the order to fit Mahmudullah at No 7. Mominul, though, is suffering from high fever and should he not recover in time, Naeem Islam could be drafted in. Shakib, who skipped training, and Mushfiqur too are under the weather.

Mushfiqur has confirmed that Mashrafe Mortaza will be in the team. The Bangladesh seamer is set to make a comeback after almost a year, having last played the ODIs against West Indies. "Mashrafe bhai is an asset for any team," he said. "We are happy that he is fit, and I hope he gives his best tomorrow". He will partner Rubel Hossain while Sohag Gazi and Abdur Razzak will bolster Shakib in the spin department.

Mahmudullah, who is Bangladesh's vice-captain, is expected to take the field for the first match as well, given his recent form - three fifties in his last 10 matches - in ODI cricket. "It will be easier for me if he [Mahmudullah] is in the ODI team. Naeem bhai too has worked hard, while not being picked in the Test series. They are waiting for a chance," he said.

Bangladesh are nursing the effects of a 1-2 loss to Zimbabwe in May. They struggled to cope with conditions in Bulawayo and were not helped by their luck with the toss either. Though they have home advantage, given the amount of dew, a battle against the conditions is on the cards again.

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on October 29, 2013, 6:09 GMT

    Looks as if the 4-0 drubbing in 2010 is affecting Bangladesh more than it is affecting NZ. Bangladesh cannot claim to be as strong as they were back then, or even in as good form in One day cricket coming off a series loss to Zimbabwe. NZ are coming off a series win v England in England. Surely NZ must go in as favourites. They have already played 2 tests in Bang so they will be well acclimatized to the conditions.

  • Dummy4 on October 29, 2013, 4:44 GMT

    Maybe we need to remind Bangladesh of the smashings they have had in the past from NZ? Who can forget Queenstown 2010 when Banga was bowled out for around 90 and NZ lead by Mccullum reached it in 6 overs!. 4-0 pshhh taht's nothing. Anyway hope it's a good game. If I'm a bit more respectful then I wil admit Banga are far improved and a good match for NZ - home to the tiny population of 4 Million. Bangladesh Population is 154 million. What? I'm just saying!

  • Dummy4 on October 29, 2013, 2:39 GMT

    @siddhartha87 no kidding Sherlock. Remember the Asia cup the next year? Or was that heavily affected by rain?

  • Dummy4 on October 28, 2013, 22:43 GMT

    Wow, Gotta love this guy's confidence : 4-0 that some thing happened 3 years back will bother Newzealand? Then what about the overall 5-16 over all win loss record, Shouldnt that be playing on the back of team Bangladesh's mind ? And look who is calling South Africa a chocker ? Boy oh boy ....

  • Ryan on October 28, 2013, 20:51 GMT

    All this talk about 4-0, but the times in between where NZ and BD have met, NZ have obliterated them. T20 world cup, the one test in NZ, an ODI series - every time 4-0 keeps getting brought up.

    Best of luck to both teams.

  • Suman on October 28, 2013, 20:46 GMT

    @512fm, really? Were we watching the same series?

  • cool on October 28, 2013, 20:32 GMT

    When will Mushfiq learn to act humble??????? He just gets carried away with everything.Not a good leader, He needs to learn a lot from other captains like Cook,Misbah,MSD,&Smith..These kind of comments don't help his team or suit him.

  • Dik on October 28, 2013, 18:29 GMT

    I agree with Choudury. Also, it'll play in Bangladesh's mind as well. They keep bringing that up and become complacent

  • Partish on October 28, 2013, 18:08 GMT

    I dont know why Mushfiqur keeps shooting his mouth off... If it is part of gamesmanship, I believe B'Desh and Mushfiqur would be well advised to stay away from it. B'Desh is no Aus, who could talk big and also "walk the talk". Over the last 18 months, B'desh has been "decent" and a little more consistent. To go up to the next level, they should be dominating teams like Zim and Ireland, but they are as far from doing it as Sun is from Pluto. Infact they lost the recent ODI series with Zim. Rather than trying to play mental games, he should focus on what he can do to win this ODI series for Bdesh. The last thing you want is McCullum or Taylor to wake up from their slumber and flog this Bdesh bowling attack, which with Mashrafe/Rubel/Sohag/Abdur is pedestrian. Shakib al hasan is the only world class player in this team. So it will be better if Mushfiqur keeps his gob shut and gets along with doing his business. Bdesh has extremely passionate fans & they deserve their team to win much more

  • siddhartha on October 28, 2013, 16:55 GMT

    4-0 happened even before 2011 wc. If rain does not interfere New Zeland will all the matches.

  • No featured comments at the moment.