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Australia v Bangladesh, NatWest Series, Cardiff

Whatmore - 'I am smiling'

Cricinfo staff

June 18, 2005

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The Bangladesh coach Dav Whatmore was understandably delighted with his team's victory against Australia - just their tenth one-day win in their history. But he also told Sky Sports that there is always room for improvement.



Dav Whatmore: 'We handled the conditions better than they did' © Getty Images
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How do you feel after that victory?
I am smiling to be honest. I'm very, very, very pleased to see the boys bounce back after a pretty demoralizing month or so of Test match cricket; one practice match where we got beaten, and one one-day match. It's very hard to take sometimes, but this was brilliant.

Did the Worcestershire match help to lift your spirits, though?
It did a bit. We handled the conditions better than they did. We lost some wickets chasing 168, but to win was a great time. I know what this team is capable of - we just have to believe in ourselves and do things better than people expect. It's the consistency of being able to do good things at the time. We have always thought we were capable of at least pushing the opposition very hard for the win and, in doing so, you give yourselves a chance.

Talk us through your victory today
We know that what we've been guilty of is losing wickets too early and, if we can do that, we would back ourselves - and that's what happened. We had some wickets in the bag today bit we also needed to collect some runs and that's what [Mohammad] Ashraful did today. We were very, very keen not to panic. It's easy to panic when you see the run-rate coming up, and it's easy to play a false shot. It was a personal battle. I am not going to be the one to just hand my wicket away the way I have done in the past, and that's what we managed not to do today. Whether we bat first or bat second we just think we don't need to lose wickets in the first ten or 15 overs. If we can just do that we will snowball; the boys will get confident if we can play shots over the infield without losing our wickets, it's all to do with keeping our heads. It's more likely that later on we can take a calculated risk and take it back to the opposition - and that's what happened today

Mohammad Ashraful hadn't been batting well before today
No, he hasn't - and that's the frustration of it all. Most people who follow Bangladesh cricket will see glimpses of his form. It really, really, really frustrates me and a lot of other people when he gives his wicket away. But I'm not asking for a hundred every time.

But it's important, nevertheless, to stick with the young players and give them a chance
That's right. We were keen to teach him a lesson on the odd occasion: about a year and a half ago, we left him out of the team. With Aftab [Ahmed] coming up as well, he's showing everyone that he's got what it takes. He's got great potential. He's also been very, very, very helpful in giving us an opportunity to score big totals.

His average is not that impressive [16.5 in one-day matches]
I know more than anyone his average - and what he's capable of.

How can Bangladesh improve now?
We think we should be able to field as well as most. We are a bit naughty on giving singles away and the odd half-chance. You're never satisfied as a coach are you?

What celebrations do you have lined up for tonight?
I had planned a little training session for the reserves with the view of making one change before the next match - and I still think that will happen. But I'm not going to worry about that tonight, and I think they will have a great time celebrating.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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