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October 30, 2009
News : Batting frustrates Shakib Al Hasan
Report : Bangladesh coast to 2-1 series lead
Preview : Tussling teams look to inch ahead in even contest
Matches: Bangladesh v Zimbabwe at Dhaka
Series/Tournaments: Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh
After failures in both one-dayers against Zimbabwe so far Tamim Iqbal, the Bangladesh opener, has declared he's determined to answer his captain Shakib Al Hasan's call for a more responsible top-order effort. A blistering century from Shakib helped Bangladesh square the series on Thursday after the home side lost three quick wickets in pursuit of 220.
"We were under a bit of pressure with three wickets going down for almost no addition to the total," Shakib told Tigercricket.com. "When you are 44 without loss in 3.5 overs, it is criminal to throw wickets away and become three down for 56. I would have been mighty pleased if Tamim, Junaid [Siddique] or Ash [Mohammad Ashraful] had got a hundred because the stage was set for them."
Tamim was the top run-getter in the series in Zimbabwe two months ago, including a sensational 154, but hasn't been able to replicate that form over the past week. "We fully understand that we have not done our job," Tamim said. "I agree with the captain that one of the top three should have gone on to make a big score in the second match, especially after such a great start. I am not happy at the way I have batted so far but hopefully you'll see a proper approach tomorrow."
After a successful few months, including series wins over West Indies and Zimbabwe, Bangladesh were upset in the first one-dayer on Tuesday by an all-round show from Elton Chigumbura. Tamim said the big win in the second game had lifted the spirits in the dressing room. "We were a touch nervous after losing the first match. We had been so dominating in the last few months that such a result was quite unexpected," he said. "We lost the game while batting. However, after yesterday's performance the confidence is back. The momentum is with us now."
Bangladesh may have won by seven wickets on Thursday and with more than twenty overs to spare, but Tamim warned his team could improve further. "The second match was a good exhibition of the talent of our team and we still haven't played to our full potential. We can get even better."
One man who was at his best in the second game was Shakib, hammering the Zimbabwe bowlers on his way to a fourth one-day century. During his innings, he became only the third Bangladesh batsman to reach 2000 ODI runs, and he now set his sights even higher. "I was very much aware that I was 90-odd shy of 2000 before the series started. I got 13 in the first match and yesterday it was a personal target to cross the mark," he said. "I would be very happy if by this time next year I can complete 3000 ODI runs. That's a goal."
The other architect of Bangladesh's victory was left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak, who took a career-best 5 for 29. Razzak is just returning from a hamstring injury, and has also changed his action after it's legality came under scrutiny. "I am so pleased with it [my new action]. I had worked for months with coach Salah Uddin on it," he said. "The ball is now gripping very well and the whole bowling motion starting from the run up to the release feels comfortable, almost as if it is programmed."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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