Sports, Cricket

Proud Shanto praises Tiger pacers

Published : 23 Dec 2023 09:47 PM

Bangladesh captain Najmul Hossain Shanto praised the pacer bowlers' efforts in their remarkable win in the third ODI on Saturday and said he was really proud of the way they bowled against New Zealand. 

The match saw a remarkable form reversal from Bangladesh, as they dismissed the hosts for just 98 runs in 34.1 overs. The pacers were exceptional, hitting the right areas consistently, and not looking for wickets. 

Such a dominating bowling display came as a relief to Shanto, the stand-in skipper in the absence of regular captain Shakib Al Hasan, especially after the Tigers' below-par performance with the ball in the first two games.

Despite taking two wickets in the first over, Bangladesh had let New Zealand pile up 239 for seven in a rain-curtailed 30-over-a-side game in the first ODI, which they lost by 44 runs. The Tigers' bowling was also toothless in the second game in Nelson in which the hosts assailed a 292-run target with seven wickets in hand

The run chase was a procession, with captain Shanto scoring an unbeaten half-century as they coasted to 99-1 in 15.1 overs.

"Really proud of the way the boys played this match. Before we started this series, we believed we can win this series. Last couple of matches, we played well but we couldn't finish, but the boys played some good cricket and we got the right result today," Shanto said. 

"The bowlers weren't looking for the wicket, they bowled in the good areas for a long period of time and I am really proud of the way they bowled today," he said.

Shanto, led from the front with an unbeaten half-century and contributed with an unbeaten 51 where he hit eight fours.

"I didn't try to smash, I just played my game and focused on my batting process. This match will give us a lot of confidence. But T20 is a different format, we have to plan for that. Hopefully boys can play good cricket in the T20s as well," he added.

Bangladesh are scheduled to play a three-match T20I series against the hosts, starting from December 27 at the same venue, and Shanto was looking forward to it but after some deserved relaxation and sightseeing of the city of Napier.