Sri Lanka v Bangladesh, 2nd T20I, Colombo April 7, 2017

We played with more freedom - Shakib

"We don't often win like this abroad" © Associated Press

Freedom was the hallmark of Bangladesh's victory in the second T20I, said Bangladesh allrounder Shakib Al Hasan, who top-scored for his side with a 31-ball 38, before claiming 3 for 24, having opened the bowling.

That Bangladesh played without fear was clear in the first six overs of the match: Soumya Sarkar and Imrul Kayes cracked eight fours and three sixes inside the Powerplay, fetching 68 runs. Shakib subsequently consolidated the innings alongside Sabbir Rahman and Mosaddek Hossain. Even though Bangladesh lost quick wickets towards the end of the innings, 176 for 9 always seemed a formidable score.

The 45-run victory was Bangladesh's first in the format since they beat Oman in Dharamsala in March last year.

"We played with more freedom in the second T20I, compared to the first game," Shakib said. "I think it is a positive sign. We have to play like this in T20s. It is important because we hadn't won the last eight games. The Asia Cup last year was our last good tournament. It was a big challenge for us in this game, as we had lost the first game. This is a satisfying win."

Though Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza didn't have an especially memorable game himself - he got out for a golden duck, and then returned 1 for 30 from his four overs - his team was intent on sending their captain into retirement with a win, Shakib said.

Furthermore, despite being the frontrunner to take over the reins from Mashrafe as the new T20I captain, Shakib said he was "not thinking about captaincy" at present. Instead, he chose to dwell on Mashrafe's legacy.

"Mashrafe is a special figure in the dressing room," Shakib said. "Naturally, everyone will miss him. We need support on and off the field, and there's no one more helpful than him. Nobody can play forever, so I wish him all the very best in life. I would want him to continue in the ODI team for a long time, and take Bangladesh cricket forward."

Shakib stopped short of proclaiming the Sri Lanka tour as Bangladesh's best-ever abroad, but mentioned that victories in the country were "rare". All three series were drawn 1-1.

"We made huge improvements in the Test series after losing the first game. In ODIs, we showed the consistency of the last couple of years. We didn't bat well in the third ODI, but overall we had a mindset change in Tests and T20s. We don't often win like this abroad."

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. @andrewffernando

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • gayan on April 8, 2017, 9:45 GMT

    Another Sri Lankan, yes !! Well played gents! You guys are a pleasure to watch! :)

  • hussyy on April 7, 2017, 22:14 GMT

    Great win! But just curious though-Bangladeshi players were always given freedom. In my views if BD players were given less freedom they would win more matches because i cant't fully feel confident when bd players in action!!

  • unoor06637842 on April 7, 2017, 20:27 GMT

    Bangladesh is improving day by day

  •   Cricfan21489977 on April 7, 2017, 19:15 GMT

    AP VIJAY KUMAR - I am from chennai and my straight answer to you about what a comedy.. Bangladesh has won few games abroad ( away from home ) for ex: world cup matches etc.. I would say BD has improved a lot do not forget they have won series against India irrespective of home or away advantage.. They were minnows once upon a time .. But, now they have great young players like fizz, mosaddek etc.. If they play same like this aggression then they can beat any team. All the best BD for Ireland, new zealand series.. Shakib / Mahmadullah for T20 captainship is my opinion.

  • Shabbir on April 7, 2017, 17:41 GMT

    A P VIJAY KUMAR ON APRIL 7, 2017, 11:14 GMT: We get it! You cant frites the performance but you have to make negative comment about something. Keep it up

  • Yasintha Lakmal Rajawansha on April 7, 2017, 16:37 GMT

    a sri lankan here. Its a great achievement by Bangladesh. They have improved a lot. Now everyone should understand their potential. Good luck tigers.

  • mohammad on April 7, 2017, 13:16 GMT

    BD players played better than their normal play, but luck had a big roll too. Sakib was dropped twice in the last match, so was sabbir in the prvious match. SL fielding was poor. If you would give those chances to Aus, End, NZ, SA players they would not miss. BD in that case would not score a total to defend. Keep that in mind. They are improving but a long way to go to compete with the big guns.

  • A P Vijay Kumar on April 7, 2017, 11:14 GMT

    What a comedy from shakib,he us telling that " we don't often win like this abroad". Ha ha ha, they don't win in abroad, often is a too much word. Yes nowadays bangladesh doing a great job, but it's a comedy from shakib.

  • shohag on April 7, 2017, 9:44 GMT

    bangladesh team shows vast improvment in all formate and hopfully they keep improving ahead ...mashrafee will be missed by all bangladeshi fans...what a great leader he is..

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