Bangladesh news

'Very difficult to even want to bowl fast' - Siddons

Daniel Brettig

April 28, 2011

Comments: 33 | Text size: A | A

Mashrafe Mortaza was helped off the field after he injured himself during New Zealand's innings, Bangladesh v New Zealand, 1st ODI, Mirpur, October 5, 2010
Mashrafe Mortaza, though often injured, is a rare exception to the spin-dominated landscape of Bangladesh cricket. © Associated Press
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Fast bowling remains a worryingly fleeting element of Bangladesh cricket. No international team can flourish without quality pace bowling, and the obstacles faced by any prospective fast man in Bangladesh are greater than most. The former coach Jamie Siddons painted a vexing picture of the pace outlook in the nation he has just vacated, where only the ageing and injury-stricken Mashrafe Mortaza has been close to transcending his environment.

"The first-class competition is very different, wickets are slow and low, dominated by spin, not always good spinners, but spinners tend to hold the score up and get wickets," Siddons told ESPNcricinfo. "Almost all of our first-class grounds are like that, so an opening bowler might bowl a four-over spell and then not come back until the second new ball sometimes. So in terms of developing fast bowlers it is very difficult for them to even want to bowl fast."

Paradoxically, the search for quick bowlers is also impeded by the conditions prepared to suit the home side in internationals. The surface at the Shere Bangla Stadium in Mirpur may be prepared more favourably for pacemen, but team management has been hesitant to do so out of fear that overseas visitors will take too much glee in exploiting the bounce. Nonetheless, Siddons argued the required pace talent was available in Bangladesh, and needed more thorough domestic infrastructure in order to tease it out.

"It's really difficult for a kid, there's not a lot of organised cricket in the right spots, so he's got to be spotted by talent spotters, which could be an ex-player," said Siddons. "There's a lot of academies that have sprung up across the country, that are not what we would call academies but they're run on park grounds, one coach and a lot of players.

"If they spot a player that is super-talented, they'll push them through and then filter them into Under-17s, Under-19s academies and that sort of thing. Players don't get the opportunity to play every Saturday like we do (in Australia), or school cricket at the same time in the middle of the week, that doesn't happen either.

"They might play three or four games a year, some kids, and some even less than that. I think it's organised, they're trying to organise it, but it's not as good as what we've got in Australia, and the reasons would probably be very varied, and I can't really tap into what they are."

A proving ground in the mould of the famous MRF pace foundation in Chennai would be useful to meet the needs of a nation. "You've got to find them in the first place, they're out there," Siddons said. "There's a couple of good tall guys who just haven't had the work done in their physique.

"I hope that's something everyone remembers now I'm gone, focus on the team yes but also look at the players coming up, because that's important, that's the most important thing. The bowlers will be there, we've just got to find them and nurture them and bring them through with the right system."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by justk on (April 30, 2011, 3:41 GMT)

and winning against major teams is doubt in that, even though i am an indian and hate that thrashing of 2007 world cup given by bangla to us , but still on that day, they played very good cricket no doubt in that as a team which plays good cricket wins..but in this world cup also, they did give some fight..except those two horrible games against windies n rsa...though rsa had a good bowling unit, but against windies, they should not have imposed the lowest total of the world cup...this thing is serious..and problem again is not talent, may be mental toughness

Posted by justk on (April 30, 2011, 3:37 GMT)

@praxis:i did not say that bangla does not need fast bowler, and i said that problem is not of talent..the real problem is that none of them is able to understand how bangla cricketers play cricket..their method of playing cricket and working to develop it into a winning habit..coaches are just like managers, good managers always give inputs to maximise the strenght to make the combination into a winning one..even sri lankan cricket excelled when they started playing cricket their way, even indian cricket excelled when indian way of cricket came into picture..and yes, some fine tuning is essential..but that does not mean to complete change the face itself...

Posted by tkaikobad on (April 29, 2011, 19:18 GMT)

This is my thought .... if BD wants to get more fast bowler they have to make fast bowler friendly pitch(Not all of them ...50% of all is ok). Then have to find out fast cann't get them from 17 or 18 yrs age..We have to look to our ARMY, NAVY & Air force...if they can play while they are employed to army or navy, many will be interest to give a shot...

Posted by Mushtanda on (April 29, 2011, 18:43 GMT)

AndyZaltzmannsHair: Yes, Bangladesh doesn't rely on the English county set-up, they just had to rely on India/Dalmiya to get Test status.

Posted by Praxis on (April 29, 2011, 17:31 GMT)

@justk, your comment makes sense but good quicks are important part of the attack regardless of conditions and strength or strategies. Apart from a decent 1st class structure this issue is the biggest concern for BD(in my opinion). @tapooori, trust me, most of us are looking for the answer to your question for a long time. Also its very important for the BD fans to stop being so hyped over these occasional wins against stronger teams and be patient for the long-term improvements.

Posted by   on (April 29, 2011, 15:44 GMT)

These are constructive feedbacks. Thanks Jamie.

Posted by   on (April 29, 2011, 12:21 GMT)

Now jamie siddons should not blame the bangladeshi cricket system, when he was coach he got more than 2 years to work on those topics, why he is now complaining isn't clear

Posted by justk on (April 29, 2011, 10:56 GMT)

after going through this artcile, it has become clear that why bangla cricket has gone into the reason is not talent or structure etc..the real reason is that no one is able to understand the bangla way of cricket..and i guess, siddons failed there big time...he was imposing australian way of cricket..that is sutiable only for australia..there was a time when india also used to be taken at their own backyard..but after 1992, we became strong at home atleast..and it took another 10 years to start winning at least one tests during the tours..there is nothing wrong in playing to the strength..infact, it should be posed a challenge for the visitors..sri lanka played to their strength, england plays according to their does rsa and oz and new bangla should prepare rank turners for the visitors..winning at home will create excitement amongst the young players to do more..then they can develop a team..

Posted by   on (April 29, 2011, 6:06 GMT)

aussies are ranked no. 1 right now, this result was expected. at the same time, there is nothing wrong in trying to take advantage from spin supported pitch. india always do that for themselve. those who are saying ireland is better than bangladesh, they are daydreaming. they have played above their standard in this worldcup. congrats to them. bangladesh have beaten all test nations already and will shake them regularly within 2 years. its the youngest team, let them be more matured and experienced. some are saying ireland should be given test status. well, to be a test nation you need the imfrasructure which bangladesg have but ireland dont. @Finn92... how come you say those 3 irish bowler is 'pacer'. lol they are medium pacer and way slower than 'Rubel', 'Shafiul' and 'Mashrafi'. BD already have shown what they can do. Irish bowlers are lucky they still didn't face a 'Brutal Tamim Iqbal'. Irish batsmen can do it once in a while, Tamim do it very often...

Posted by   on (April 29, 2011, 4:29 GMT)

Banglasdeh should play more cricket with similar standard teams like New Zealand and West indies (both of who we have whitewashed) for the next two years.

At the same time the Board should develop Pace Conducive pitches for 1st Class cricket and Division leagues and the premiere league....If possible they should also be developed for the national school cricket competitions.

We do have Mashrafe, Shahadat, rubel and Shafiul who are capable of bowling at 140 kmph.....but we need to make sure that the teeangers in the U-17 or U-19 learn to take care of their bodies especaily the fast bowlers ....with proper eating and fitness practice....Tru we would have been happier with an Alan Donald or Curtly Ambrose....Look at Zahir Khan.10 years ago he was a mediocre bowler but consistent fitness has taken him to a world class level somewhere mashrafe could have been if not for his fitness troubles. Bd was once below Kenya in rankings and today boosts equal ranking points to West Indies

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Daniel BrettigClose
Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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