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Match Analysis

Rahkeem Cornwall: 'I fed off the extra bounce in Dhaka'

"The plan was to keep things simple, be patient and put the balls in the right area"

Mohammad Isam
Mohammad Isam
Rahkeem Cornwall tosses one up as Mominul Haque looks on, Bangladesh vs West Indies, 2nd Test, Dhaka, 2nd day, February 12, 2021

Rahkeem Cornwall - "I worked with what I get, with whatever pace I get out of the wicket, I use it as my strength."  •  BCB

Rahkeem Cornwall generally does not react to a lot of things, but when Jermaine Blackwood dropped Nayeem Hasan, the Bangladesh No 10, he let out a moan. Blackwood had, earlier in the over, expertly moved to his left as Liton Das shaped to play the lap sweep, and intercepted the catch. It was a vital breakthrough, and gave Cornwall his fourth wicket.
When Hasan edged his regular offbreak, Blackwood couldn't quite hold on to the straightforward chance. Next ball, however, Blackwood made amends with another sharp catch coming off the batsman's top edge. The moment of taking his second five-wicket haul in Tests saw Cornwall pump his fist and look towards the sky in ecstasy.
Cornwall's five-for was building up during the Test series. He was the only bowler being talked about in Bangladesh's press conferences ahead of the Chattogram Test, particularly after his five-wicket haul in the practice match at the MA Aziz Stadium. He bowled steadily for 42.2 overs in the first innings in Chattogram before briefly bursting into life during the second innings when he removed Tamim Iqbal and Najmul Hossain Shanto in his first over.
The bounce in the Dhaka pitch has helped Cornwall, who delivers from up high, against relatively shorter batsmen. He had Mominul Haque's number in the second day, giving him just one run off 14 balls before having him caught behind with one that jumped slightly off a length. Cornwall also preyed on the patience of Mohammad Mithun and Mushfiqur Rahim in the second morning. Mithun could take only five runs off his 22 balls before chipping one to midwicket, while Rahim got out to a strange looking reverse sweep after surviving a top-edged sweep shot the ball before.
"I had a meeting with the bowling coach this morning, to ask him what he thinks," Cornwall said. "He told me to 'back your skills and put the ball in the right areas for a long period of time to be successful'.
"The spin is not what I expected but the ball bounced a bit more. I think, getting that bounce, I fed off it, created the energy and put the ball in the right area.
"The ball bounces a bit more in Dhaka. There was not much bounce or spin in Chittagong. I got a bit more purchase here. I worked with what I get, with whatever pace I get out of the wicket, I use it as my strength."
Cornwall said that he had to be patient to pick up the wickets, backed by the 400-plus first-innings total.
"It is always a good feeling to take five wickets. I helped put the team in a good position to win the team. The plan was to keep things simple, be patient and put the balls in the right area. I think the way our batsmen set up the game the day before, we knew that the bowlers had to do a good job today."
Cornwall said that West Indies' job is not yet done, as they must now score another 250 runs on the fourth day, to give Bangladesh a formidable 400-run target in their fourth innings.
"I think we are slightly in the driver's seat. Tomorrow is an important day for us. We just have to bat well in the first hour. We have to be in a reasonable position at lunch so that we can set a reasonable target for Bangladesh. We can have a run at Bangladesh in the end (of the day). Anything over 400 will be comfortable for us."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84