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Anand Vasu in Dhaka
December 26, 2004
When India won the first one-dayer at Chittagong by 11 runs, Sourav Ganguly said the margin did not truly reflect how the game had gone. He thought Bangladesh were never in that game. Well, in the second one-dayer, there can be no doubts about who was in control and who wasn't. Ganguly admitted that India were outplayed on the day. "We didn't play well enough. We didn't bat well enough, 230 was a gettable total, but we lost wickets at regular intervals," he said. "But we must give credit to Bangladesh for their outstanding effort on the field. Their bowling was backed by some outstanding fielding effort and we were not good enough."
India were also forced to set aside all ideas of experimenting with youngsters after they were beaten by 15 runs today. "Obviously we are going to be at our full-strength for the next game. It is the series decider," said Ganguly, though he defending the decision to experiment. "We had to give them opportunities as the selectors had selected them. Obviously we didn't play well enough to win the game. I don't think the youngsters are only to blame, it's all eleven."
When asked to pinpoint the reasons for India's defeat, Ganguly said, "We lost wickets early so we had to build a partnership and when we built a partnership we again lost wickets. We lost wickets at regular intervals so that kept Bangladesh in the game and that kept the pressure on us."
Ganguly also agreed that this match was the lowest point in a season where India have struggled in the shorter version of the game. "Obviously it is the lowest point [of the season]. We struggled but it is a one-day game and we have been beaten by a side which played better than us today so that is a point of concern and we need to wake up and do something better tomorrow."
Bangladesh were sharp in all three disciplines, and Ganguly made it a point to mention this. "Definitely they have become a good bowling side and a much better fielding side. They fielded outstandingly. Obviously in the three departments of the game, I think they have improved in these two departments since the time what I have seen them last," he said. "Everybody contributed and their batters batted well. Aftab [Ahmed] played well, [Mashrafe] Mortaza and Tapash Baisya had an important partnership at the end. They then came back, bowled well and fielded outstandingly."
Habibul Bashar, for his part, did not want to put this win on a pedastal, among Bangladesh's rare victories. "I don't want to rate this win. For us every victory is important especially against a Test-playing nation," he said. "Kaif's run out was one of the important turning points of the match. I'm very pleased with the allround effort of the team. I'm not thinking of a series win but just carrying the form into the next game."
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