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Bangladesh are devastated - Siddons

Sidharth Monga in Chittagong

March 7, 2011

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Jamie Siddons at a press conference, Mirpur, October 4, 2010
Jamie Siddons said the Bangladesh public need to realise the players were the ones most upset by the loss to West Indies © AFP
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Jamie Siddons, the Bangladesh coach, has said that his team are devastated and shell-shocked after their loss to West Indies in Mirpur. Bangladesh were bowled out for 58, their lowest total in ODIs and the lowest by a Full Member in all World Cups, on a decent batting track. "Devastated. Everyone is still a little shell-shocked. Very embarrassed by the performance," Siddons said of how the team took the defeat. "Disappointed for the public, but more importantly it's a World Cup, and we need to play good cricket."

That defeat was followed by some unfortunate incidents in Mirpur: the team buses were pelted with stones by angry fans, and Siddons appealed to the public to realise the people most hurt by the performance were the players themselves. "The public have been very good the whole time, but they were disappointed after the last game. The public needs to realise, and I think they do realise, that the players were the most devastated, most embarrassed, and most upset by the result. They don't go out there to play cricket like that. We are very keen to bounce back from that performance."

According to reports in local newspapers, Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan's parents' house was stoned too. Siddons, however, said the people of Bangladesh were still behind his team. "Some people react. Things happen in every country in the world, after crazy performances like that. These people are very big supporters of the Bangladesh cricket team. I saw nothing different when we drove in today [Sunday], or yesterday [Saturday] from the airport; there was still unbelievable support for us. Everyone was disappointed by our performance, but everyone needs to realise these are the best 15 players in Bangladesh, and they are doing their best. If they have bad performances, that's the way it is. We are trying, we are doing our best. We'll play good cricket against England, Insha Allah."

It's in everybody's best interest - apart from the authorities - to forget what happened on Friday night. And that includes the Bangladesh cricket team. Siddons spoke of the need to not over-analyse that game. "Three or four dismissals were repetitions of mistakes I see in the nets every day, and those weaknesses were exposed in that game. The boys are working on them, they have been working on their faults for the last two or three years. They certainly came out under pressure, and played some shots that we know are our downfalls. The boys have promised me that there will be an improved performance in the next game. Not much more you can say about 58. You can't over-analyse that."

Siddons agreed that similar mistakes were made in the game against Ireland, which they won thanks to a spirited show in the field to defend a meagre total. "We know what we are working on and what we have to do to play well. It just fell apart that one day. I don't want to over-analyse because that will not get us anywhere. But we need to learn from it, and the players are aware of that. They need to change a few things and stick to our team plans, which they didn't do so much in that match, and not even against Ireland. They went away from what has been successful for us for some reason."

Siddons said Bangladesh had batsmen in the XI who can stick around and build an innings, as opposed to the reckless show they put up in the two previous games. "Imrul [Kayes] and Imrose [Junaid Siddique] are the two players that are expected to play long innings. Mushfiqur [Rahim], batting at No. 4, is expected to do that as well. He has done it in domestic cricket; he has done it before at No. 6; and we have pushed him up to No. 4 to do that job. Imrose was playing a lot of shots, and I have spoken to him about that. That's not his role in the team. As I said, these are the best 15 players for the job. There is no-one outside that can do a better job. So we stick with these players, and we make sure that they do better next time."

Siddons admitted that their performance has left them short on confidence. "The boys are still shell-shocked. They are sad by what happened and by the performance we put up. I am flat. My confidence is a bit dented as well. But we'll move on. I don't expect anybody else to forget it, but we need to forget it and move forward to the next game."

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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