Bangladesh v West Indies, 2nd ODI, Khulna December 2, 2012

Anamul delivers under expectation


Anamul Haque said he found a sea change between his previous hundreds and the one against West Indies in the second ODI, the most notable of which was the pressure to deliver under expectation.

His century of 138 balls against West Indies was the tenth hundred in his short career. He has gained a habit of making big runs, one that is often missing in Bangladesh batsman.

"There's a lot of difference between scoring hundreds anywhere else and one for Bangladesh," Anamul said. "I had fantasised of scoring a hundred in international cricket but never thought I would do it in my second game."

In domestic cricket he has scored seven centuries in the last 13 months: five in first-class cricket, two in the one-day competition plus a century in the Dhaka Premier League. The volume of runs last season had made him an automatic choice for back-up opener but he had a miserable time in an unofficial Twenty20 tournament in Zimbabwe which was his first brush with big time cricket. He was sent back to the Under-19s where he made two centuries against Sri Lanka and Pakistan in the Under-19 World Cup this year.

"I have scored ten hundreds in the last year. The difference between the previous ones and today is the experience of the bowlers," Haque said. "They bowl fewer loose deliveries and they have a lot of variations in the bounce and the lengths. There's crowd pressure and I am playing for the country, so there's a lot of difference."

The highlight of his innings was not just his footwork but the pace of the 145-ball knock. After reaching a half-century off 60 balls, Anamul took another 55 balls to move to 90 before waiting for another 24 balls to reach his century, off 138 balls. He then blasted 20 runs off the next six deliveries he faced, ending up with a 82.75 strike-rate. He would have attracted harsh words had he not made that final dash with two slogged sixes and a boundary off Andre Russell.

He said he slowed down after getting to fifty because Mushfiqur Rahim was batting at a faster rate and finding the gaps, added that his constant encounter with the getting to a hundred eased him through the 24 deliveries between 90 and 100. "I am familiarised with the nervous nineties. When the fielders are outside, it is better to find gaps and just take singles. Mushfiqur was batting with me, so I didn't have much to do.

"Bad balls were available so ones, twos and the boundaries were coming. I didn't need to go after the bowling; it would have been criminal if I tried something extravagant at that stage."

Mushfiqur and Anamul added 174 for the third wicket, just a run short of the all-time highest partnership for Bangladesh in ODIs. Mushfiqur scored 79 off 87 balls with the help of eight fours and a six, an innings that not only raised the run-rate but helped Anamul settle. He was also helped out by Tamim Iqbal in the first game when the more experienced opener went after the West Indies bowlers from the word go.

"Tamim kept telling me to stay positive, be confident. If he bats in that manner, I don't have to do anything. It was the same today because I was batting with the captain.

"Mushfiqur told me to carry on till the 45th over, whether we are getting the runs in singles or doubles. We can go for the big hits from that point, we have batsman behind us."

Anamul's century was the third by a teenager for Bangladesh after Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim but the early success has to be channelled through a proper approach which would iron out his footwork and reflex issues. The competitive age-group system through which he has come out of successfully would help him not to bask on the hundred too much and stay on the course of improvement.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Andrew on December 4, 2012, 11:23 GMT

    @Ahmed Hussain - agreed, his conversion rate at FC level is outstanding, 13 times he has reached 50, more than half of those occasions ended up with a century! Looking thru Bangladesh's FC batsmen, few get a ton on average in less than say 12 innings, Anamul gets one every 6 innings, which suggests a very good career ahead. @AzAb12754 on (December 03 2012, 13:43 PM GMT) - Bangladesh have a very young side, & if they can keep picking up a class player every year or two, - 6 to 8 years from now, Bangladesh are going to be very tough to beat in Asia.

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2012, 16:30 GMT

    I hope he does not end up like Ashraful, and would be at least another Tamim. Bangladeshies crumble under the pressure of high expectations. Shakeeb stood the pressure but then Shakeebs are not born everyday.

  • Smith on December 3, 2012, 13:43 GMT

    A class batsman has left recently while another one the picture shown in this article has arisen but this time a Bangladeshi. He was by a long distance the top run scorer in the recently concluded Under-19 World Cup on the worlds fastest tracks. He still needs to sort out his foot movement and play the short delivery with ease and if he can do that then he will easily become Bangladesh's best batsman. Playing spin is his strength so its pace that he will find most challenging at the moment but I believe he will overcome this with time. The third Bangladesh teenager to score an ODI 100 after Tamim and Shakib and we all know how valuable these two players have become in the team.

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2012, 11:13 GMT

    @Meety...Well the surprising thing is that his ideal game is the long form. Before he got this century yesterday, he was averaging 16 in A games but in first class, he averages well over 40 so that shows he's far more likely to succeed in tests. He has the patience and determination to score big unlike our other top batsman.

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2012, 10:54 GMT

    Another flash in the pan ... don't make a big fuss about it, let him grow his career as usual ...

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2012, 10:49 GMT

    no doubt on his ability and future world cricket star batsman from bangladesh. can anyone what the last thing we bangladeshi need now?

    A Fast Bowler!! this team will be unbeatable in oneday cricket :)

    Good luck for 3rd match at Dhaka. Cheers!

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2012, 8:05 GMT

    I think Anamul have a talent.he will be the best batsman in the world.

  • Dummy4 on December 3, 2012, 4:16 GMT

    well done anam... carry on in the same fashion. Temperament is the key to success in international cricket. unfortunately it was missing from most of Bangladeshis.

  • Fazle on December 3, 2012, 2:05 GMT

    1. Anamul will become future great batsman, 2. He is the next Sachin tendulker. Please do not give him pressure.We already lost Ashraful. he scored 100 in test against srilanka/muralidharan. Best of luck. he need a lot to improve. And i am sure he will.

  • Andrew on December 2, 2012, 21:05 GMT

    @Ahmed Hussain - I think he already is Bangladesh's best batsmen, I am very confident he will have career averages in the mid 40s (or better) in ODIs & Tests. He is definately a class act. I thought his innings in the 1st match was perfect to partner Tamim. In tests - I'd prefer him bat down a slot or two - whilst he develops, but opening in ODIs is a okay. Well done to Bangladesh for winning two in a row - amongst the biggest margins Bangladesh has produced against a Test nation! Promising signs!

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