Sports, Cricket

Wagner praises Tiger batters’ defensive role

Published : 02 Jan 2022 10:08 PM

New Zealand pacer Neil Wagner heaped praises on Bangladesh batters for their different brand of cricket against the Kiwis.

Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal have been playing more attacking cricket against the Kiwis whereas Najmul Hossain Shanto and Mahmudul Hasan Joy played in a quite defensive manner during the first Test at Mount Maunganui.

“Bangladesh have been pretty tough opponents whenever they have come here. They have always played well in our conditions. The likes of Shakib al Hasan play a different brand of cricket. They come out quite aggressively, play a few more shots. It creates an opportunity for us to take wickets, as well. They are quality players and have been around for quite some time,” said Wagner.

“Full credit to the Bangladesh batsmen. They played really well. They showed a lot of patience. They showed a bit of fight. It is a tough graft out there. It is just a good days’ hard and tough Test cricket,” Wagner said.

Joy and Shanto struck half-centuries to propel Bangladesh set a strong reply to New Zealand's first innings total of 328. The duo added 104 runs for the second wicket partnership by defending 239 balls.

“The younger guys today played phenomenally. I thought they played patiently. They didn’t really give too many opportunities. They hung in there. They were prepared to dig in. They left the ball quite a lot,” he said.

Wagner, who took a couple of wickets admitted that the day wasn’t in their side and remained hopefull to bounce back on Day 3.

“It is just a good days’ hard and tough Test cricket. I think we fought really hard but couldn’t really string together enough to create pressure from both ends. Everyone tried really hard but it wasn’t to be our day. But it is Test cricket: we have an opportunity tomorrow to fight harder and get early wickets,”