Bangladesh v Netherlands, WT20 qualifier, Group A, Dharamsala March 8, 2016

Dharamsala's unique conditions a challenge - Mashrafe

ESPNcricinfo staff
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"It is cold at night and we have to play two matches at night. We haven't had too many chances of playing in India, but there cannot be any excuses." © AFP

Bangladesh's last tour of India was for the Champions Trophy in 2006. Mashrafe Mortaza, the captain, is just one of two surviving members - Shakib Al Hasan being the other - from that side.

If Bangladesh were playing in any other part of India, where conditions were similar to their own, it wouldn't come up as an issue. But Dharamsala has an elevation of approximately 4780 feet above sea level, which would make the conditions on offer a unique challenge for them.

And to get accustomed, Bangladesh gave themselves one full day -Tuesday - when they held their only training session at the HPCA stadium after arriving in the country late on Monday, immediately after the Asia Cup final in Mirpur on Monday. There were plans to send the team to Dharamsala late in January for a short camp to get an idea of what to expect, but that was called off because of the harsh Dharamsala winter at the time.

Mashrafe said while they had to get used to breathing in high altitude, apart from adjusting to the cold of the receding North Indian winter, in stark contrast to the warmer climes of Dhaka, they were only focused on the controllables after a creditable showing in the Asia Cup, where they beat UAE, Sri Lanka and Pakistan, on their way to being runners-up to India.

"Indian conditions are mostly similar [to Bangladesh] but there is a difference here," Mashrafe said. "You need to adjust to the breathing also. We needed time to adjust. It is cold at night and we have to play two matches at night [on March 11 and 13]. We will have to play at our best. We haven't had too many chances of playing in India, that is true. There cannot be any excuses. Expect one or two guys, all are new to conditions in India but we are hopeful of doing our best."

While Netherlands have had time to suss up the conditions, having spent a week in Dharamsala, Bangladesh would be banking on their recent form to carry them through. "I think it's has been great achievement as far as T20 is concerned," he said. "We are growing up as a team. We did a good job in T20s last week. We have more challenges coming up."

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  •   Zifan Hai on March 9, 2016, 5:17 GMT

    I guess the problem will not be about cold that much...rather with the height and breathing. Bangladesh needed few more days before the start of play. I will not be surprised if Bangladesh lose the match. Players might get tired very quickly.

  • Cricinfouser on March 9, 2016, 3:26 GMT

    Meanwhile, senior players of BD are considering first round matches as for practice and they are happy for it.

  • Akash Patel on March 8, 2016, 23:34 GMT

    Always preparing a wall before the water hits....in case things go south, the greatest team in the world needs to explain why?

  • i_golam on March 8, 2016, 21:00 GMT

    Its a bit similar to Europe, ( cold & dry ) ... but what the hell ... some of our boys have played in England and some other parts of the world, and Tamim has been fantastic there ! .... So no worrys, just play the right cricket and take Mahammudullah up in the batting line !!

  • Sammy on March 8, 2016, 20:32 GMT

    Bd only needs to concentrate on its own game - bowl tight lines which they did against everyone; bat well and the game will be won. India did just that against Bd and won easily in the end. By beating both SL and Pakistan comfortably. Bd has proved that it is a force to be reckoned with. On their better days they can take even the big teams to the cleaners. At they moment they are better than both SL and Pak. and the second best team in Asia. That is a commendable feat by any measure.

  • Bangladeshi_Bangali on March 8, 2016, 18:47 GMT

    Hope Bdesh can overcome the challenge. Good Luck R B Tigers.

  • Fictionaliser on March 8, 2016, 18:06 GMT

    I sincerely hope Bangladesh continues their good form in T20 and spring out some upsets, though nothing of that sort against India! We want a strong Asian bloc

  • i_amVIVA on March 8, 2016, 17:48 GMT

    Adjusting to the cold and dry weather would definitely pose a challenge to the Bangla Tigers. I can definitely atteste to that when I experienced the same in the Chicago area directly from Dhaka years ago. I hope they can withstand that somehow, and move on with their superb form from the just concluded ACC championship.

  •   Md Rajib Hasan on March 8, 2016, 15:41 GMT

    yah condition in dharmoshala is the main fact that bd player need to mix.

  • cooljack_143 on March 8, 2016, 15:14 GMT

    BD s batting will be tested in Dharamsala,esp this time of the year its cold & far from similar to dhaka.Netherlands i think will be better equipped having spent some time here coming from similar weather conditions. Its game on..

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