Bangladesh in Sri Lanka, 2012-13 March 24, 2013

Jurgensen wants improvement from fast bowlers

15

Tillekaratne Dilshan and Tamim Iqbal corroborated at the end of the first ODI that the Hambantota wicket had become flatter in the second innings. There was dew too in the evening, but even such decisive factors hardly explained why the Bangladesh pace bowlers served up a buffet of half-volleys and over-pitched deliveries.

Rubel Hossain and Abul Hasan gave away 96 runs in their combined 10 overs, giving a measure of where pace bowling stands in the side after a spate of injuries. But Rubel is considered one of the frontliners even when the likes of Mashrafe Mortaza, Shafiul Islam and Nazmul Hossain were fit. Now that none of these three is in Sri Lanka, it had to be Rubel and Abul taking up the baton but they seem to have dropped it even before taking off, so to say.

The seven boundaries in the first three overs jolted the Bangladesh side to the degree that the five-plus required run-rate in the remaining 38 overs hardly mattered as their body language slumped. Such a start, more often than not, leads to desperation and although captain Mushfiqur Rahim tried to rotate the bowlers, the conditions, the wicket and the lack of confidence among the pace bowlers could not restrict the hosts.

The conditions remain an advantage to the pace bowlers, and there are other encouraging factors for them in the next two games too. Ziaur Rahman's steady eight overs showed how control is possible, although he did not bowl during the powerplay. Rubel and Abul have the potential and they have the best chance to show their ability in this series when they are under pressure to bounce back.

Coach Shane Jurgensen remained steadfast about the pace bowlers who have been under his guidance for the last year and a half. He wants them to bounce back quickly if Bangladesh are to have any chance in staying alive in the three-match series.

"We were playing one-dayers after quite some time but we should have acclimatised quickly," Jurgensen said. "We have to bowl better tomorrow, try to hit a good length and make sure our team remains in the hunt."

But there was frustration in his tone. As someone who even walks around the boundary rope to speak to the pace bowlers, it is quite clear that the first half hour on Saturday wasn't comfortable for Jurgensen either.

Tamim too backed the pace bowlers and hoped they would improvise soon. "The wicket changed in the second half," he said. "It wasn't easy at first, but dew helped the ball come nicely on to the bat.

"I wouldn't point the finger at anyone because we back each other when one of the departments doesn't do well."

It was also noteworthy how the poor lengths bowled by the two pace bowlers affected the spinners. Mushfiqur has often brought on a left-arm spinner within the first powerplay, but on this occasion even the trusted Abdur Razzak got sucked into either too full or too wide a length. Sohag Gazi too had a hard time controlling the slippery ball.

Mushfiqur and Jurgensen will be focused on getting their pace bowlers' lengths right for the second game. They could enforce a change by bringing in the replacement Shahadat Hossain straight off the plane, dropping either Rubel or Abul.

But the decision of bringing back the erratic pace bowler into the one-day team is a move that has to be questioned. Whether the team's needs are understood properly is a question that can be posed to Mushfiqur, Jurgensen and the selectors.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on March 26, 2013, 13:31 GMT

    Very ordinary seam attack BD has. We need more pace hunts in BD...tall bowlers with swing and pace both. Other than that I think BD is a decent team at this moment.

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 18:57 GMT

    BD needs some pace bowlers desperately. They are growing up but what is more important for them is couple of pace bowlers. We got Mashrafee, but lost him as he is struggling with injury. BCB must pay highest attention on this criteria.

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 8:41 GMT

    again shahadat? may god bless bd team.

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 7:56 GMT

    i do agreed @Mehdi Rahi. Bnagladesh urgently need specialist bowling coach otherwize they will lost every match in future. BD can't depend on these abul & rubel who are distroy Bangladeshi supporters hopes. i do not know why BD selector always select these rubel & abul. we lost many match bcz of rubel. still BcB select him very disappointed. Why BCB chief quite, i do not understand.What is their plan. they are look forward or backward. sometimes very difficult to understand.Because of BPL all best player could not play this tour. How they plan very rediculers. woke up BCB woke up. do not upset BD supporters. We are getting a pain for nothing. Pls tried to understand & choose pace bowling coach from Pakistan.

  • ajithabey on March 25, 2013, 6:50 GMT

    Even the SL fast bowlers were below par both in the test and one dayers so far.I would go with four bowling allrounders instead on placid pitches which does not favour the pacies at all unless batsmen make mistakes which makes them look so ordinar to no fault of theirs.

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 6:26 GMT

    So whats the today's trick for Srilankan management, is it putting grass big, or just problem with floodlight or something else. It will never come to my mind about suspicious things as i have observed and noticed something that was little bit abnormal and different. In 2nd test when BD bat they just don't know the condition about sluggish and slow outfield . Surely did not have any idea for accelerating the score and just lost too many wickets , other hand Srilanka was well aware and use the particular side of the field to scored many runs in quick session! that's story of 2nd Test. In first one day not once, twice when BD was in top position,play just stopped that surely hampered the flow,game shifted towards Srilanka, Who knows if Tamim was there a little longer, BD may score near 300. After scoring 260 (which was tuff to chase),when Srilanka was in back foot then 2 hours play stopped and focused has been lost.Recent time Australia did same treatment with Srilanka if i am not wrong

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 3:58 GMT

    The selectors should consider Taskin the U-19 fast bowler. He had some decent pace and movement in the BPL.

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 2:38 GMT

    someone please let me know how to post comment on a live match ongoing. i meant, tweet on commentry page

  • hasib9 on March 25, 2013, 2:32 GMT

    One thing I never understood is how bowlers like Abul Hasan make it into the national side. His econ/average in domestic cricket is below ordinary. How come we haven't produced 5 to 10 international quality fast bowlers? We have been playing cricket for a very long time now. Find strong tall kids who have good pace (and brains) and train them. Mortaza is the only fast bowler we have ever produced.

  • dummy4fb on March 25, 2013, 1:37 GMT

    There is no point of taking useless bowlers even though the situation is favourable to that kind of bowlers. Jurgensen himself was basically our bowling coach... there is something missing for sure. I had been a medium pacer myself..... I am confident enough that I wouldn't have leaked that amount of runs for sure! Do they not practice bowling on specific spots..... and vary those spots so that they can bowl different lengths to different batsmen? I am completely confused with Bangladeshi fast bowlers' approach.......

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