Bangladesh v West Indies, 2nd ODI, Mirpur December 4, 2012

No pressure on us - Mushfiqur


Despite being on the verge of a series victory, against a West Indies team seemingly made for one-day cricket, and in front of passionate home support, the Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim has insisted his team are not feeling the pressure ahead of the third ODI in Mirpur but retained respect for the matchwinning potential in the visitors' team.

"All the pressure is on them, not us," Mushfiqur said. "The manner of defeats would make them think because we didn't win by one wicket or 10 runs, we won by handsome margins that proves we are playing better cricket than them. If we can continue in this vein, we can get a favourable result.

"Having said that, West Indies are a capable side and they can come back and surprise us. They are a dangerous side. Things are clicking in our favour, whether that is forming a batting partnership or taking a wicket at the right time. But I am confident that even if they play well, our consistency will pull us through."

If Bangladesh can convert this opportunity into a series victory it will not only help the team's confidence but will also provide a vital lift to their standing on the world stage. They have slowly come into grips with the nuances of ODI cricket, a format they are more consistent at than Tests or Twenty20.

"We have been playing good, consistent cricket in ODIs for the past year and a half, especially at home," Mushfiqur said. "It is definitely a huge opportunity in front of us to win the series. Everyone is aware of this so I hope we continue doing what we have done in the last two games and perform in all three areas."

Mushfiqur also hit back at West Indies coach Ottis Gibson's suggestions that Bangladesh have "had it easy" after Gibson said that it was his batsmen who have given away the wickets.

"We have forced them to gift the wickets," Mushfiqur said. "Our bowling partnership was very good so they didn't have any options apart from giving us the wickets. As simple as that."

Bangladesh's two victories have come without key allrounder Shakib Al Hasan, who has been ruled out of the series, and while Mushfiqur conceded it was a big hole to fill it has open up opportunities for some younger players which, he said, bodes well for the future.

"It would have been a lot better performance with Shakib. We are fortunate that a cricketer like him is in our team. I hope he comes back to cricket quickly. Due to his absence, the younger players have a chance to play in this series.

"It is a big opportunity for them, if they can play against such strong opponents and do well they will have a lot of confidence. We have guys now who perform so we have more than just Tamim and Shakib to rely upon. It is a good sign, and is a new addition to our strength."

Mushfiqur, who confirmed Rubel Hossain will replace the injured Abul Hasan, expressed concerns over the amount of dew that everyone has seen on the Mirpur outfield as they trained under the lights.

"Rubel has recovered sufficiently after bowling a lot in the Tests, and he will replace Abul Hasan," he said. "The wicket will be slow but probably the ball will skid in the evening. I am surprised to see so much dew in the evening. We lost to India even after scoring 290 because of the dew. It is a concern, so we will try to balance the team keeping this in mind."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • sadequl on December 5, 2012, 18:03 GMT

    No worry still two more match to be played so play positive cricket & bring atleast one win against WI to win the series & take the upper hand in cricket ratings - In-Shaa-Allah.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2012, 6:40 GMT

    We want back to back 5 wins.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2012, 6:05 GMT

    "We have forced them to gift the wickets,"---- I like the response from Mushfiq

  • md. samaur on December 5, 2012, 5:25 GMT

    good luck guys........... hop u wil d series winner

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2012, 3:16 GMT

    Very delightful speeches. Go Mushfiq Go

  • Jay on December 4, 2012, 23:31 GMT

    Bangladesh in their own conditions are formidable in ODIs. Can't be said of them in the same way when they go overseas. WI on the other hand are showing signs of complacency. They thought they disposed off Bangladesh in the tests and the job at hand during the ODIs would be a cake walk. Too bad, they are reaping the troubles now.

  • Dummy4 on December 4, 2012, 20:46 GMT

    I hope we win the series. That will do wonders for our confidence; give the team a lot of respectability. Mushfiqur talks well; he hits out when necessary; is complimenting when the opposition is deserving of praise. More importantly, he is in good form and leads from the front. In my mind, he is the real Man of the match in the 2nd ODI. He stablised the ship when it was in trouble and it was his free scoring that allowed Anamul to proceed towards his century. As Tamim Iqbal famously said, its not always a century that's the most valuable. Sometimes even a 30 can be precious and take the team to victory. Well said Tamim. Now stop the chatter and give us some runs.

  • Smith on December 4, 2012, 19:21 GMT

    Lets clinch this series tomorrow and afterwards seal it. Also to the people that say Ireland, Afghanistan blah blah blah are better than Bangladesh, tell them to first beat West Indies, India and Sri Lanka all in the same year good luck :P

  • Dummy4 on December 4, 2012, 18:58 GMT

    best of luck tigers. make us proud. :)

  • sadequl on December 4, 2012, 18:41 GMT

    Very best of luck captain & play just the way you played in Asia cup to defeat Sl & India. If you can do it then so you should do it today [3rd ODI] as well & in addition you have a 2-0 lead in the series so play with a spirited team effort as a group of tigers in Mirpur & you will make us proud Inshallah.

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