Bangladesh v Nepal, World T20, Group A, Chittagong March 17, 2014

Mushfiqur wary of Nepal challenge


Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim will not let his side take Nepal lightly, and having had a look at his training session on Monday afternoon, it is clear that they are treating this game like any other, with equal significance.

As he does so often on the eve of matches, Mushfiqur came to the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium early for the extra net session. One of the bowlers troubled him and Shamsur Rahman, who had recently joined the captain in these early nets, but otherwise, they smashed a few having had a good knock from a member of the support staff.

Bangladesh's focus has been firmly on winning games, having only won their first international match in 2014 on Sunday when they crushed Afghanistan by nine wickets. It broke a nine-match losing streak, which included two T20s against Sri Lanka last month and seven ODI defeats on the trot. Mushfiqur gave a reminder of what had been happening, to put everyone into Bangladesh's perspective.

"We will try to beat them even if it is a ten-wicket or one-wicket win," Mushfiqur said. "Whatever it is, our main focus will be to win the game, by hook or crook.

"T20 is a format where the game can change easily. Tomorrow's game is very important for us because we are plying the World T20s. The last three months the results didn't come our way, so from that aspect we are not ready to give away anything."

Mushfiqur believes the team started to think positively as soon as they beat the UAE in the Fatullah warm-up game on March 12. But he still doesn't feel at home in T20s, as he said that it is difficult to play consistently in this format.

"We are in a good position now. But honestly, it is difficult to play consistent cricket in T20 cricket. This is a shorter version and a bowler or a batsman can change the game [very quickly]. At the same time, we have quite a few match-winners, so we are a bit relaxed from that aspect."

The turn and bounce that worked so well for Bangladesh against Afghanistan at the Shere Bangla National Stadium might not have the same effect against Nepal, as Mushfiqur expects a different surface in Chittagong. He said that he would pick an extra seamer if the need arises.

"We saw the last game and the results of practice matches as well. This is not a typical Chittagong wicket. There is a bit of grass. Because it's a night game, the pacers might get a little bit more help. We might play an extra pacer.

"We still have till tomorrow afternoon to decide, and there might be more work done on the wicket. Normally, the turn that the spinners get they may not get that but we have quality spinners and good pacers."

Bangladesh ultimately will look to hold on the momentum from the Afghanistan game. Mushfiqur believes having the feeling that things are on their side is important in contests like T20s, particularly when the team had been through a rut lately.

"In the last game our bowlers bowled well and the fielders backed them up. The main target will be to keep the momentum. We won three games in a row (including the warm-up games). T20 is all about momentum. We will work to carry the momentum. Insha Allah, we will be able to adjust soon."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on March 18, 2014, 23:00 GMT

    Don't worry Mushie, I think BD will win by 8 wickets in hand...

  • Dummy4 on March 18, 2014, 12:12 GMT

    All the best for my Nepal!!! Insha Allah Nepal will win!!!!

  • Dummy4 on March 18, 2014, 11:56 GMT

    Thanks Mushi- please keep the momentum and all we have full confidence on you- do not die before fight- whole nations with our cricket team and praying for you. Insa Allah we'll celebrate another winning evening and move on to TOP 10.

  • mohammad on March 18, 2014, 8:53 GMT

    Bashu Acharya Would you say the same had the opponent been Australia?

  • Dummy4 on March 18, 2014, 8:41 GMT

    Nepal! Nepal!! Let's hope for Miracle. All result is possible in 20-20 cricket.

  • Dummy4 on March 18, 2014, 8:21 GMT

    Dear Cricket Lovers,

    Everybody loves to watch his/her nation playing in Highest format of cricket(World Cup) and so prays to god to win the match for them. We, Gurkha's will do the same. Nobody in this tournament is weaker or stronger. Its a game you hav to play to win. In some comments, I noticed that people are assuming Nepal as a weaker candidate and bangals as stronger, I deny. We are the master of our soul. With the likes of Shakti, Regmi, Paras, Kami, Veswakar, Malla, we can nightmare anyteam.


  • Arifur on March 18, 2014, 8:21 GMT

    In order to display some good shows against the top teams, BD shouldn't take Nepal lightly but should win this game as easily as against Afghan. Tigers played their natural game in the last match after a while, so they didn't fail any depart. The same should continue throughout the tournament. BD players often make some silly and stupid mistakes and pay for them costly. Playing with similar confidence and attitude in Asia Cup two years ago was another good example. One other thing I don't understand why selectors didn't form a best team like below. This sort of team can be very hard to beat as the team is full of allrounders. 1.Tamim Iqbal 2. Anamul Haque 3. Shakib Al Hasan 4. Mishfiqur Rahim 5. Nasir Hossain 6. Mominul Haque 7. Mahmudullah 8. Ziaur Rahman 9. Sohag Gazi 10. Mashrafe Mortaza 11. Abdur Razzak/Rubel Hossain. I believe Ziaur can be the best choice for T20 as a team needs a hard-hitter like him in the lower order while Mominul is experienced, compared with Sabbir & Farhad

  • KH. RAFIQUE on March 18, 2014, 8:13 GMT

    Hope we are going to WIN the match if our BAN players play with full passion.Good to see that our neighbor NEPAL is emerging as CRICKET playing nation.Dont worry guys we would be always with you guys as we are still with ZIM,IRE and Afghan allowing those country's players to play in our domestic league to gain more experience over Bangladesh.Still you (CRITICs) would not say that BAN is helping/well wishers of others???

  • Dummy4 on March 18, 2014, 7:44 GMT

    None can predict this kind of

  • Golam on March 18, 2014, 7:43 GMT

    Yesterday I saw India vs Srilanka & after the match I began to think that there is no way that some other team from out of Asia can or will win this tournament ! If BD qualify to next round so they will also be a big threat like Pak /Srl / Ind for the cup.

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