Bangladesh news March 10, 2014

Nasir, Razzak look for turnaround

Bangladesh batsman Nasir Hossain and bowler Abdur Razzak have both defended their form ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 after they received criticism for their recent performances in the ODIs.

Nasir has made just 140 runs in seven innings this year, and is going through his longest streak without a fifty in ODIs, while Razzak managed just two wickets in the last three games.

Nasir, though, has said he doesn't feel out of form and he is trying to get out of a mental rut. "From where I bat, I don't get chance to bat long," he said. "My strike-rate has to be more than 100. If I am defending 10 off 20 balls, it brings pressure. These things happen to everyone. I have made 30 or 40 odd in the last game, but I think my form is okay.

"I think I am having a good enough time. You may think otherwise. I think it can happen, not scoring runs in a few matches. I am trying to get out of this. I think the media talks more than the people. I thought 'I have to perform, people are talking,' so probably that put some pressure on me."

When Nasir was first picked, the then chief selector Akram Khan had said his strength was to bat according to the situation. Nasir, too, reiterated that, saying his job was to stay around till the end without worrying about goals.

"I can't set a goal. I have to think of being in the middle when 20-25 balls are left, so I have to keep focusing on that," he said.

While Nasir's lack of runs deprived Bangladesh of strong finishes with the bat, the criticism Razzak received was for giving away 18 runs when Pakistan needed 31 off 18 balls in the chase of 327. Razzak, though, said the criticism was uncalled for.

"For most of the time in my career I have bowled in the first, second Powerplays and in the last four overs," Razzak said. "Fingers were pointed at me when I have done badly, which I think is a good thing in a way. I can understand that I am not doing it well.

"If you see my past, I have given five to seven runs," he said. "Have you ever thought we have won games because of such overs? Maybe at some point, someone could have noticed and written on it."

Razzak was confident he would continue the role of being Bangladesh's go-to bowler in the Powerplays and slog overs. "I can get a top-edge and it can go for four, off a good ball. Shots can go over the top, but I enjoy bowling in such situations. They believe in me to bowl in those times, so I want to keep that belief.

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