Bangladesh in Sri Lanka 2012-13 February 25, 2013

'Our best chance in Sri Lanka' - Mushfiqur


Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim has said he wants to correct Bangladesh's woefully poor record in Sri Lanka. They have lost all eight Tests played there since 2001, but he believes the current team is capable of making a difference this time.

"The tour is a big opportunity if we can play to our potential," Mushfiqur said. "We don't have a good record in Sri Lanka. So to do well we have to continue playing the way we have in the last 12 months."

Mushfiqur hoped to use the momentum from Bangladesh's last international series, where they pushed West Indies in the Tests and beat them in the ODIs. He was also encouraged by the dearth of experienced bowlers in Sri Lanka and the major injury concerns for the home side, although Bangladesh are also without their most effective player, allrounder Shakib Al Hasan.

Mahela Jayawardene has been ruled out of the Test series after dislocating the middle finger on his left hand, while Sangakkara has only just begun batting in the nets after sustaining a fracture on his left index finger during Sri Lanka's Australia tour. Jayawardene has been replaced by Thilan Samaraweera, who himself has twisted his knee and is an injury concern, but Sangakkara is likely to be named in the 15-man Test squad in a few days.

"There are sporting wickets in Sri Lanka hence we have to apply ourselves," Mushfiqur said. "They are going to miss [Mahela] Jayawardene which will be a big loss for them. Kumar Sangakkara's participation is also uncertain, so they will be weaker without two of their best batsmen. Their bowling attack is not extraordinary. They haven't won many Tests after [Muttiah] Muralitharan and [Chaminda] Vaas retired. So this is our best chance to do well in Sri Lanka."

Mushfiqur would also like to improve Bangladesh's away record as a whole. "There haven't been [many] instances of [us] doing well abroad. We haven't played consistently and there usually have been lots of changes in the squad. There are some new faces this time too, but this is a very promising side.

"We did well in our last series against West Indies. I don't think anyone gave us a chance, but we were consistent and ended up winning the ODI series."

Bangladesh are also travelling with several players on their first Test tour, especially the young batsmen Anamul Haque and Mominul Haque who impressed during the ODI series against West Indies. Mushfiqur has asked the younger players to view this tour as a start, and not just a reward for their performances so far.

"They deserve a place in the Test squad. They have done well for the A team, and also during the BPL. Some of them have made good ODI debuts, so I hope they bring [a similar] performance to the Test side. For those who have been recalled, it is reward for their performance over the last year and a half. But they shouldn't think this is the end, this is just the beginning."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Smith on February 28, 2013, 20:44 GMT

    ....Bangladesh actually yes are producing better talents than not only your declining team Sri Lanka but also most other teams for example Anamul Haque who last year by a distance was the top run scorer at the under-19 world cup and made his debut against the West Indies last year and in just his second match, scored a 120 check it out on Youtube :P and we have other young talents like Sohag Gazi the next Saqlain Mushtaq, Taskin Ahmed the 17 year old emerging fast bowler of Bangladesh who recently bowled out your Dilshan for a Golden Duck :) in BPL 2 check it out so yeah, GOOD LUCK!!! feel bad for the future of Sri Lanka Cricket sorry Mark but best of luck !!! :D :P

  • Smith on February 28, 2013, 20:42 GMT

    @Mark: Sanga is not getting any younger so he won't be there for much long :P No team stays the same as years goes by and its a real shame Sri Lanka will be going down first Vass then Murali and one day Dilshan, Mahela, Sanga even Herath all GONE :) :P Your under-19 team who will one day replace those quality players are just not good enough which is why they came in 9th place at the under-19 World Cup last year :) Bangladesh leads you the future of Cricket 14-8 and just imagine when they go up against 'experience' still young players like Shakib, Tamim etc :P Bangladesh had full status in 00 not 96 :P but times are changing now it will be our turn to dominate teams like Sri Lanka :P But its funny you deliberately skipped 07 where Bangladesh did make it to super 6/8 for both World Cup and World T20 beating India, South Africa and the West Indies so ha!....

  • Dummy4 on February 28, 2013, 16:46 GMT

    The tigers have set the sail for the Isle of Lanka with a quest they primordially fostered. They'll never disgruntle whom they represent; they'll hold the aces high; they'll never countermand and they'll never cringe. A gory Armageddon for the right to retrieve the grail of supremacy awaits. The Lions would protect the grail and their lair that incarcerates it by any means necessary and the tigers would contrive to lead the incursion. We'll get to savor the bellicosity between the predators; the aestheticism they'll emanate.When the tigers used to be cubs, they were squelched by the pageantry of titans more impregnable. But now, they've metamorphosed into alpha males! I believe the tigers, the Guardians of the Sunderbans will carouse with the grail with their paws on top of the food chain. It's just my pride and certainly the pride of 160 million Bangladeshis that invigorate us.....

  • Yasiru on February 28, 2013, 14:41 GMT

    @AzAb12754 Ah yes mate sanga is in Sri lanka or bangladesh team :P In front of every SL victory With or without being man of the match he will be a big reason.Same goes with dilshan mahela herath and every member with our team...Oh when Romesh kaluwitharana retires from cricket same comment was made by these type of funny people..They told sanga at that time who is he??? Is he a batsmen.What is his talent.But we as srilanka and he himself answers that comment after 13 years of cricket and becoming 6 th best ever test player .And now when they get older same comments again made..:P Hey i dont wanna say anything just watch out how SL cricket grows.ok.We know our ways of producing talents and we proved world by becoming WC in 1996 and Runners up in 2007 and 2011 that we produce talent..3 cricketing generations played these separate WC's mate.We succed every time producing new talents.Hey look at you? How terrible You are !!In 96 and 2011 Witout no diference u strugle 2 make super six even

  • Smith on February 28, 2013, 10:58 GMT

    The good thing about this series is that Bangladesh will be playing away so if they did win any series, we won't be hearing 'desperate' excuses from other fans that they won because they were at home or something or another excuse our key players were missing. BD key players are missing too so we got that covered incase you use that :P

  • Janith on February 28, 2013, 10:50 GMT

    Now my fellow Sri Lankans, do not involve any arguments with these Bangladesh fans, we don't need to, it's not good for us to involve in arguments regarding minnows like BD. don't comment anymore Lankans. BD first thank SL for giving you a tourament to play with 2 Tests, 3 ODI's and 1 t20, though it's not a full series. hope you guys perform well, cause we don't wanna see boring matches

  • Dummy4 on February 28, 2013, 9:23 GMT

    DINESHCC@ Yah.. we have seen this type of match to take place during SL tour in AUS. WOW what a performance by AUS to sink SL in deep shame. No sooner the upcoming series strats with BD all SL people who are making weired comments here will get silent JUST wait and see.

  • associate cricket fan on February 28, 2013, 3:32 GMT

    @All_The_Way. If that the case then how did BD got higher ratings than nz in ODIs. Obviously you have to win/draw matches against top teams to earn points. you guys played more test matches than SL/Zim played in their 1st 12 years.

  • Chris on February 27, 2013, 22:12 GMT

    @soumyas - But to back up my point even further about the ranking system in Cricket, let for the sake of argument BD win those 2 test matches, according to ICC website, they will only get 15 test rating points but I've just realised that even if they win all the small amount of test matches they have according to FTP, still nowhere near good enough to achieve 4th position let alone 3,2 or especially 1. Fact is top teams England, Australia, South Africa maybe India will remain top and bottom teams will remain bottom rankings in Cricket have no purpose based on these logical evidences. If you want to look at real rankings look in proper sports like Football, Tennis or Rugby which have a proper system :P

  • Chris on February 27, 2013, 21:58 GMT

    @soumyas - Thanks for proving my point about the ranking bit :)

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