Bangladesh news August 22, 2013

Bangladesh's summer of woes

It has been a bad summer for Bangladesh cricket, with the A team, Under-23s, and Under-19s all performing poorly on their respective tours

Bangladesh cricket's misery has lurched from off-field controversies to a string of on-field disappointments, as the A team, the Under-23s and the Under-19s have had very little to show by way of results on their tours to England and Singapore this month.

The biggest letdown has been the performance of the A team, which has lost seven out of seven one-day matches so far in England, five of them to county sides. The national selectors picked 13 international players in the 15-man squad, but their frailties have been exposed despite being presented with some good batting conditions. As Bangladesh's senior side will not be touring England till 2020, this was seen as an opportunity for the players to convince the home board that they would be up for the challenge.

The BCB's decision to send a strong team was criticised back home, but the board had little choice, as most of the youngsters had to be sent to the Under-23 side. Moreover, the strong A team also had the potential to emerge victorious against England Lions, whom they had overturned 3-2 at home in early 2012.

But on Thursday, they conceded the three-match series to the Lions after a 191-run thrashing in the second game. On the same day, the Bangladesh Under-23s were eliminated from the ACC Emerging Nations Cup after losing to UAE by 59 runs, while earlier this month, the Under-19s failed to qualify to the final of a tri-nation series in England.

After Bangladesh A's massive 202-run loss to the England Lions on Tuesday, Bangladesh's batting and fielding coach Corey Richards, who is leading the side on tour, conceded that they just hadn't been competitive. The team showed little signs of improvement on Thursday and leaked 367 in 50 overs. Richards hoped that the lessons learned from the tour would serve them well in the upcoming 2013-14 season.

"We prepared really well for this tour as we knew what conditions we would likely face," Richards said. "Unfortunately we just haven't competed with either bat or ball for the full game which has been disappointing.

"It has been a big learning curve for a few players on this tour, being out of their comfort zones with regards to the conditions. As a coach I can only hope that they have and are learning from the experience and come back to Bangladesh and apply what they have learned."

On Tuesday, Luke Wright and Gary Ballance annihilated the bowling attack by adding 186 runs in the last 13 overs of the innings. This shredded the confidence of the Bangladesh bowlers, resulting in another run-fest from the home side in the second game, as Michael Carberry cashed in with 146.

"Unfortunately we just haven't been able to execute our game plans for any length of time, which has made bowling in the last 10 overs even more difficult," Richards said. "We didn't bowl intelligently during the Powerplay overs, which can create problems when you are bowling to quality batsmen."

Only Anamul Haque has more than 200 runs on tour, and has also scored the team's only century. Five centuries have been scored against them, four during the Lions matches and the other by Daryl Mitchell of Worcestershire. Elias Sunny is the most successful with the ball, but he conceded 95 in his nine overs on Thursday.

The two age-group tours mirror the A team's performance, particularly the Under-23s' - they lost to Sri Lanka Under-23s by 62 runs before succumbing to UAE. With just one win against Singapore, Gazi Ashraf Hossain, BCB's game development committee chairman, expressed his shock at the team's showing.

"It is not always wise to call cricket results as unexpected, but the way the Under-23s went down to UAE was really not what we wished for," Ashraf said. "We will have a discussion with the team management in the next two days when they return home. It is fair to say that the Under-19s are a new side, so I am only concerned about why they batted in the morning or afternoon."

All of the Under-23s and Bangladesh A players will now have a chance to redeem themselves in the well-known Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League, scheduled for a September 3 start. The tournament has already been postponed five times and if there's any further delay most of the players will have to rely on their mental strength, rather than form, come the New Zealand series in October.

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on August 24, 2013, 9:09 GMT

    This is a very bad sign for the future of Bangladesh cricket. The A team, under 23 and under 19 always signifies the back strength of a country's cricket. It seems very clear that the future of BD cricket is going to be much alike they have been for years. I believe there are affluent amount of talented local cricketers in Bangladesh. I know some of my friends who used to be excellent fast bowlers from their childhood, or consistent batsman. They are not interested to turn their career into cricket and they're tracking their career into a different zone. Reason is- talented players are not searched here in a strategic way here. A lot of talents here are being wasted who could contribute for their country's cricket. Unfortunately, nothing is happening. BCB can't be blamed because they're busy finding who will the board's chairman. Completely pathetic.

  • Dummy4 on August 24, 2013, 8:40 GMT

    I know our team played bad but hey, even India U23 lost to Afghanistan. We definitely have some serious problems with our domestic cricket and thankfully our national team did not have to be the scapegoat for it. I thank Vinayat for pointing out some of the flaws. We need constructive criticism not Fast track Bullies

  • Avais on August 24, 2013, 0:06 GMT

    BD got the test and ODI status too early and too easy. No wonder 27 years after playing their first ODI and 13 years after the first test, they have hardly made any progress. Its time ICC make them work hard to regain their cricketing status. revoke their test status and let them play ODI and t20 but only with the emerging nations like Ireland, Zimb and Afghanistan. Give more support to Afghanistan and monitor the progress there. Hope security situtaion will get better there in near future and I'm sure Afghanistan would be a far better side than BD's vastly overrated team

  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2013, 19:09 GMT

    Unbelievable to have lost to UAE in U-23, then some club teams of County Cricket.This is completely unacceptable.I just don't understand which clas they even belong to.It is the time to dig in to the local structure,local pace,spin attackes and very importantly play on sporting tracks just like SA or AUS or even Pakistan.Tamim & Shakib are god gifted.But they won't last forever to provide service and this must be understood by BCB and.All the ordinary spinners should adapt new techniques in terms of swing and flight rather than gentle traditional bowling,and we have been shocked with BD pace bowlers since the inception of BD cricket.I have got a good name like Taskin with lot of promise.At least he is aggressive with nature.We need some handy pacers like him and fully sweep out bowlers like Shahadat,may be Rubel and all others (Run Machines) Overall,we need biggest change in the team set up otherwise we are heading towards 4-0 sink against NZ like we did to them in the last tour..

  • Dhiraj on August 23, 2013, 19:04 GMT

    Dissapointing, true. they need to buckle up. Most of the players never played outside of the subcontinent. They will do better next time. Albert Campbell - the fans do not say future looks good. They say there is reasonable evidence that progress is being made. Joy Bangla 71 - people progress because they do not give up. Your children will enjoy following the BD team more. Don't shame yourself by saying we should give up.

  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2013, 10:29 GMT

    Maybe about time for BCB to realize that Tamim and Shakib will not always be there to cover up for the weaknesses in the national team. Also another demonstration of how flat tracks are hurting our chances against condition which are ever so slightly benefiting bowlers.

  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2013, 9:49 GMT

    the best way for Bangladesh is to

    1) Identify promising players and send them to play county or even domestic cricket of India and Lanka...

    2) Appoint coaches from India or Pakistan. So that the Bangladeshi cricketers could understand what coaches is been trying to tell.

    3) Improve the infra structures right from grass root levels.

    4) believe in youngsters and give them optimum time to get their feet on he international arena.

    and of course many more.

    _from Indian

  • Muhammad Rakibul on August 23, 2013, 9:34 GMT

    "Only Anamul Haque has more than 200 runs on tour, and has also scored the team's ONLY century."- Mohammad Isam, u probably forgot the blazing century of Ziaur Rahman against a county side on this tour.

  • siddhartha on August 23, 2013, 8:43 GMT

    Bangladesh need to play on greener wickets at home. The quality of pace bowling is also a worrying factor. They must produce one or two world class fast bowlers if they want to win anything outside Bangladesh.These bunch of spinners can never win you a match in countries like Australia,South africa etc.