Bangladesh news November 9, 2013

'Playing well on foreign soil our next challenge' - Shakib


Shakib Al Hasan, the Bangladesh allrounder who missed his side's successful ODI campaign against New Zealand with dengue fever, has said his team's next challenge is to do well away from home.

The fever weakened Shakib physically - he has lost three kilos - but he did follow the matches even while being treated in a hospital. He requires at least another two weeks to fully recover from the illness, after which the doctors will decide on the next course of medication.

Shakib remains a huge part of Bangladesh's plans, but they managed to win the series without him. He believes all this progress means they now have to take their game to the next level. "We now have to do well on foreign soil," Shakib said. "We did well in Sri Lanka earlier this year. Similarly, we have to do well in one or two other countries, and then slowly in every country. Playing well on foreign soil will be our next challenge.

"There are a lot of performers in the team. We have been consistent at home over the last two years. We are a very strong side here, we have beaten almost all the sides except Pakistan. We have been winning quite regularly, not once in ten games."

Like many others have pointed out, Shakib also said Bangladesh's teamwork was a major gain from the New Zealand series. The likes of Naeem Islam, Rubel Hossain and Shamsur Rahman stepped up whenever the need arose for a match-winning performance. Naeem replaced Shakib after it was clear that the latter would have to remain in hospital for a few days.

"Naeem bhai had a tough job to do, because he sat out both Tests. He was suddenly called up but he found confidence after doing well in the first game, and took that to the next two games. He was rightly rewarded for his hard work.

"It wasn't just him who did well. [Shamsur Rahman] Shuvo bhai was new to the team but he played a splendid innings. Rubel got six wickets, Mushfiqur batted well in the first game. Someone or the other stood up at the time of the team's need. These things happen in the better teams around the world."

Daniel Vettori's absence made a difference for New Zealand, he said. Vettori has taken 84 wickets in 30 matches across formats against Bangladesh, and without him the visitors' spin attack was compromised from the onset. Vettori also averages 32.11 with the bat against Bangladesh.

Shakib even said that his absence didn't make as much of a difference to Bangladesh, as did Vettori's for New Zealand. "It mattered a lot that they didn't have Vettori. They also missed [Martin] Guptill and [Jesse] Ryder but Vettori's absence made the big difference, mainly because we were their opponents. Vettori doesn't just bowl well against us, he has bothered us with the bat too.

"I can't do it all alone from our team. We used to win because I had some others performing alongside me. But Vettori used to finish us off on his own, especially in Test cricket."

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Subterraneo on November 11, 2013, 8:43 GMT

    On foreign soil, BD suffers from the same shortcoming as IND and SL - lack of good fast bowlers. Spinners alone cannot consistently win matches outside the subcontinent - Murali was able to deliver just two wins in England and zero in SA and Australia, whereas India's wins outside the subcontinent in the 2000's owed heavily to their batting and occasional fast bowling brilliance (e.g. Agarkar in Adelaide 2004). Therefore, given the current situation, a drawn series in Zimbabwe or drawn matches in West Indies are not too miserable. For now, Bangladesh is doing well in fortifying their home record.

  • Aditya on November 11, 2013, 4:37 GMT

    Love it when Bangladesh Tigers roar and perform instead of just roar and snore! Of late, Bangladesh has been the team to watch out for with their amazing spree of limited overs success. Alongside India, SL, and Pakistan, it sure feels great that Bangladesh is soon forming an Asian quarter that the rest of the world cannot take lightly anymore. Now, only if Afghanistan can contribute consistently over the next few years, we can even form a pentagon as strong as a fist! Shakib is a great cricketer (has tons of fans in India) and his desire to succeed abroad just goes onto show that the tigers are on the right track to hunt down larger preys! Good luck ahead tigers, keep roaring!

  • Nayeem on November 10, 2013, 7:53 GMT

    @Kalana, Bangladesh's performance abroad has improved this year. We drew the test series 1-1, and lost the ODI in 2-1 margin. Zimbabwe lost pretty badly last time they toured Bangladesh as well. How many countries are good at winning in foreign condition? Even Srilanka haven't won a test series in Australia or South Africa

  • sajid on November 10, 2013, 7:39 GMT

    @ Kalana: Shakib meant to do well in ODIs in foreign conditions. Bd drew the test match series 1-1 in Zim. Even Pak lost 1 test match at Zim too. I think you were too harsh to say "they failed badly".

  • Dummy4 on November 9, 2013, 21:27 GMT

    First BD has to win against Zimbabwe in Zimbabwe before even thinking about winning against quality opponents in away conditions. Last I checked they failed badly against Zimbabwe in Zimbabwe in both test and ODI

  • Muhammad Rakibul on November 9, 2013, 14:32 GMT

    Once BD heavily depended on him. He was the main per4mer in 2010 BD-NZ ODI series. In fact in that series Vettori said Shakib made the difference between them. So his illness might've been a big loss if the Naeem, Rubel, Shamsur wouldn't step up in ODI series.

  • Sabbir on November 9, 2013, 11:04 GMT

    The A team, U 19 team should play more abroad matches. BCB Shoud prepare at least one bouncy pitch in every vannue. By the way I think Bangladesh can win ODI seris in West Indis cause this pitch is like sub-continent.

  • Tanmay on November 9, 2013, 10:28 GMT

    A Mumbaikar fan here...nice to read about Shakib & Bangladesh...its high time that Bangladesh a full series plays in India - a series of 2 tests, 5 ODIs & 1 T20I...agree with someone who pointed out that Bangladesh needs to play in Ireland to get use to the green wickets as World Cup will be played on bouncy,green & hard wickets in Australia & New Zealand...great to see finally Bangladesh is playing cricket to its potential..cheers from India.

  • Shoaib on November 9, 2013, 9:02 GMT

    Bangladesh should play some ODI series against Ireland in Ireland. Their pitches are are grassier with more bounce and carry where it also swings and will be beneficial for Bangladesh especially for the world cup. Vice versa they should also invite them. But I totally agree with Shakib that Bangladesh performing exceedingly well away is their ultimate challenge but first we need some series away.

  • Shipu on November 9, 2013, 8:51 GMT

    The problem with Bangladesh in test matches is their inability to take 20 test wickets. Even against Zimbabwe it was a tough ask to win that second test match. Bowling is still pretty much ordinary and needs major work now and looks like to me its starting to be corrected with the emergence of Gazi, Al-Amin etc which is great to see. Bangladesh have big teams like South Africa and Australia coming up in next few years and the only way to challenge them is to prepare rank turners from day 1 otherwise they will just cruise past us because of their quality and experience in that form. The team is no doubt improving but still a lot of hard work needs to be done. Bangladesh in my view will be a dangerous opposition to anyone in ODIs home and away.

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