Bangladesh will enter into the upcoming Twenty20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman with a renewed confidence, stemming from their three straight series victories including Australia and New Zealand.
Albeit series victory against Australia and New Zealand came at a designed pitch but seven victories out of 10 matches between the two neighbouring countries would make them ooze with confidence, the team management hopes. They believe that they have the best platform to end the win drought in the T20 World Cup.
The Tigers so far played 25 matches in the World Cup of this shortest version of cricket and won just five-four of which came in the qualifying round. They won only one match against the West Indies in the tournament proper.
Bangladesh cricket's first poster boy Mohammad Ashraful was the architect of that six-wicket victory with a blitzkrieg 27 ball-61, that included seven fours and three sixes. Aftab Ahmed also played his part with a brilliant 49 ball-62 not out. Since that landmark victory, a win continued to elude them as they remain winless in the 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016 World Cup.
This time the responsibility of the team is in the hands of Mahmudullah Riyad. With a bunch of young cricketers and having a wealth of experience in Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Soumya Sarkar, Mustafizur Rahmand and Liton Das, Bangladesh looked like a team to beat any team in any kind of condition. But still it will be a huge challenging matter, specially when their ability to play well in the sporting wicket is utterly questionable.
Mahmudullah and co went to Oman two weeks ago to cope with the condition. After a series of failures and tasting criticism regarding their T20 performance, captain Mahmudullah is hoping to do something good in the World Cup this time around. The captain basically is confident because of being bolstered by several allrounders and bowling might.
“Our strength is the team's allrounders and the bowling department,” Mahmudullah said.
“Besides, our batting is also good and the balance of the team is great. We have five or six allrounders who can contribute to both the bat and the ball. Our fast bowlers are performing incredibly well at the moment. Spin is always our strength. If they can put up their natural performance, hopefully we will get some good results.”
The recent performance of the team is good. They have won 9 out of 13 matches. There are also fond memories of beating Australia 4-1 and New Zealand 3-2. Before beating those two teams of Down Under, Bangladesh also won against Zimbabwe by 2-1 at away.
Shakib Al Hasan, the biggest star of the team is confident of doing well in the World Cup.
“I think we stand a good chance in this World Cup. Our preparation has been very good. The big reason for this is that we have won the last three series. There is no alternative to victory. When a team wins, it has a winning mentality, it gives another level of confidence. If you play very well and lose a match, you will not have this confidence. We want to go to the World Cup with this confidence.”
There are three players of Bangladesh-Shakib, Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah who have played past six tournaments.
“We got our best team which is going to the World Cup. Hopefully there will be a good result. But I won't say that I want to see the team in a certain position. There is no end to good. I will rather say, I will be happy if the team becomes champions. I want the Bangladesh team to play good cricket,” Razzak said.