ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / News
Bangladesh v Netherlands, Group B, World Cup 2011, Chittagong
Bangladesh not complacent, says coach
Sidharth Monga in Chittagong
March 13, 2011
A day after their crucial win over England, the Bangladesh team has already been promised rewards by a private business house: a million taka each to Mahmudullah and Shafiul Islam, the ninth-wicket partnership that fashioned the unlikely win, and a lakh each to the rest of the team. There was even a function organised last night, but the BCB had to get the festivities postponed. The World Cup is not yet over, and Bangladesh need to guard against this kind of complacency when they face Netherlands.
It is an interesting situation that Bangladesh find themselves in. They are alive in the tournament, yet they also rely a lot on England and Ireland not winning their matches against West Indies and South Africa respectively. While that should leave them really charged up for the game against Netherlands, it is not hard to see why complacency can creep in. Netherlands have never played in Bangladesh before, and they are bound to encounter problems playing the spinners who tied England in knots.
"Each time we play a game, we try to win," Jamie Siddons, the Bangladesh coach, said. "So there is no complacency. That game is forgotten now, we move on. Whole new set of players, whole new set of plans, and possibly a whole new team." The whole new team points to the possible inclusion of another left-arm spinner, Surhawadi Shuvo, because Netherlands have a lot of right-hand batsmen in their line-up.
There are other possible distractions too. One of them is Bangladesh's poor net run-rate, at -1.241. To secure themselves against the eventuality of England's beating West Indies and Ireland winning their remaining games, Bangladesh either need to win both their remaining games, or win this one by a margin so huge that they rectify their net run-rate a bit. Beating South Africa, which is Bangladesh's last game, is a huge task, Siddons admitted.
"Mathematically if England win their next game, we can't get in, unless we win against South Africa, which is a very difficult task," Siddons said, the assumption being that Bangladesh beat Netherlands. "I am not going to guarantee that we will win against South Africa. We need to win the next two games. If England win their game, doesn't matter what we do in this game if we can't win the last game. Run-rate is very poor."
The wise thing would be to not go after the net run-rate tomorrow, instead just secure the two points, which going by rankings, they are expected to. Siddons agreed. "We won't focus on the run-rate," Siddons said. "We have got to win the match, and then win against South Africa, and we are through. That's the main focus, make sure we look after the business here. Just execute our plans, no slip-ups tomorrow. And worry about the other results after that. Quarter-finals will be great, but we have got to play good cricket."
Boosting the net run-rate is not an easy task in Bangladesh, unless a team gets dismissed for 58. "The run-rate thing is really difficult here, because our wickets aren't really 300-run wickets," Siddons said. "Whereas over there [in India] it seems everybody is making 300 easily. Our pitches and our grounds are very different to those in India and Sri Lanka. Wickets are a lot harder to make big scores on here. You have to be very careful, chasing 300 on our wickets. Very difficult."
The distractions aside, Siddons was a confident man on the eve of the game. The reason is not hard to see. "Everyone's confidence was a little knocked around [after the 58 all out]," Siddons said. "That [the win against England] gives us confidence again. Our bowlers are definitely doing the job, and our batsmen have stepped up and made enough runs to win the game against a very good team. It gives us a lot of confidence. This team [England] drew with India and beat South Africa, don't forget that. And we beat them. We are ready to go for the next two games."
More importantly, what pleases Siddons is that Bangladesh have won both the games that went close. "I am really happy with the way we are winning the close games," he said. "Against New Zealand as well [in the whitewash], we won a couple of really close games. And Zimbabwe. It's starting to become a feature of our cricket. We don't give up easily. If we get within striking distance, we come out in front rather than lose those games now, which wasn't the case in our history."
Bangladesh will hope they can win against Netherlands without actually making it a tight game, but beware a side that has nothing to lose and a party to spoil.
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