Bangladesh Cricket and its fans had high hopes for the T20 World Cup 2021, but Shakib Al Hasan and co. were not able to deliver at the highest stage when it mattered.
Questions have to be answered by all teams at the end of any failed tournament. Bangladesh won two of their eight matches at the T20 World Cup; against Papua New Guinea and Oman. The BCB will probably ask this question when the team returns to the country. But the Tigers ended the much-anticipated World Cup in a state of disarray, and it would have been easier to find the answer to the “where was it” question.
This year’s World Cup mission of Bangladesh was full of mistakes. Mistakes started even before the start of the World Cup. Because of Covid-19, where all teams carried extra players in reserve to the World Cup, the Scottish team coaches came in economy class to the U.A.E. to create opportunities for extra players, while Bangladesh started the World Cup with only one reserve player.
Although Aminul Islam Biplob was taken to Oman, he was sent back before the World Cup. Mohammad Saifuddin, Nurul Hasan Sohan and Shakib Al Hasan got injured one by one during the World Cup. In the middle match, the Bangladesh team became 13 members, the only reason behind which was the shortsightedness of the selectors and the management.
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) November 9, 2021
While Sri Lanka called Wanindu Hasaranga and Dushmant Chamira, the two mainstays of bowling, long before the start of the World Cup, Bangladesh gave Shakib Al Hasan a chance to play in the IPL even a day before the start of the World Cup.
Shakib, who was tired of playing cricket, came to accept the match-best award against Papua New Guinea. After the latest hamstring injury, the game was in turmoil and he left the World Cup in the middle of the tournament.
Mostafizur Rahman, who played a drawn match in the scorching heat of the U.A.E., was also very tired, the result of which has been translated into bad bowling. However, the statistics of his six wickets at an economy rate of 9.25 in that match probably does not reflect his nailless bowling during the World Cup.
Tactical mistakes of team management should also be discussed. Let’s bring the example of the match against England. Before that match, Jason Roy had an average of 26.7 against slow left-armers in the first six overs. The decision to start with Shakib Al Hasan is to be applauded. But the first ball floated in the air for a long time and Shakib digested a four.
Jason Roy has an oft-mentioned weakness against SLA in T20. However, he gets stuck more against the quicker bowlers. His strike rate when SLA bowlers are up at around 90kph is 121 – when they’re slower, it’s 177. #T20WorldCup #ENGvBAN
— The CricViz Analyst (@cricvizanalyst) October 27, 2021
Creekviews says that if Roy is bowled at a speed of around 90 kph, his strike rate is 121, and if he is bowled at a speed less than that, his strike rate increases to 177. The question is whether the management has done the pre-match analysis properly.
The question is getting bigger because of the 11th selection in Bangladesh. Taskin Ahmed was left out of the XI for the match against Sri Lanka in Sharjah, but he was the only one to fire the ball in the entire tournament. In the match against South Africa in Abu Dhabi with two pacers, Rabada and Nortje, Taskin bowling proved that the irrationality of the decision was proved during the match.
All the negativity off the field might or might not have been discussed unless there was a positive moment on the field. But nothing like that was seen on the field.
The problem started from the opening. The scorecard will say that Mohammad Naeem scored two half-centuries in the T20 World Cup. His half-century against Oman could also be considered a match-winner. But whether his turtle innings against Sri Lanka did more harm than good is not out of the question.
However, if the ball is turned out and the strike rate falls below 100, even if he enters, he cannot lift the strike rate above 103. As such, he has to sing Stuti because he has scored 164 runs at an average of 46.5 in 110 strikeouts. He has scored that too.
Neither the majestic Sarkar nor Liton Das of the other two openers could do that. The opening pair could not cross the powerplay without a single day. Bangladesh lost 13 wickets in powerplay in Super Twelve, the highest number of all teams.
Whether it was due to losing wickets at such regular intervals or the idea of batting conservatively in Bangladesh, the powerplay has also gained momentum to score runs per ball.
In the first six overs of the South Africa match, Bangladesh scored 5.41 runs per over. Only Namibia and Papua New Guinea were below that. The tendency to give extra dot balls and the inability to hit sixes is the reason. In Super Twelve, Bangladeshi batsmen could not hit a single six in the powerplay. The result—Bangladesh’s highest collection in powerplay was 45, Afghanistan’s lowest collection is also ahead by two runs.
The later batsmen were also disappointed. Afif, in particular, has disappointed the fans the most. Due to the failure of the top-order, he got a chance to bat at the top in three matches of the Super Twelve but could not use it once.
Before the start of the World Cup, Nurul Hasan Sohan had raised hopes by playing a cameo of 49 off 15 balls against Oman ‘A’ team. But in the main episode, his bat also fell asleep.
However, Captain Mahmudullah Riyadh’s bat did not wake up except for a match against a PNG. The entire time could not match the equation of 43 runs from 30 balls against the West Indies at the crease. Shamim Hossain Shakib, who made a splash in the Zimbabwe series by batting in a stormy manner, could not get a chance without Shakib’s injury. And in two matches, he explained that he had to go a long way from Shakib.
According to a report by ESPN Cricinfo, this year, Bangladesh has caught 48, the number is 10 in the World Cup. The World Cup could have changed its fortunes had it not been for the missed opportunities against Sri Lanka and the West Indies.
However, the regret of match drop in catch drop is not new for Bangladesh. Ryan Cook, who has been the fielding coach since 2016, also went to Bangladesh for the 2019 ODI World Cup. He missed several catches at crucial times in the tournament but missed catches of Rohit Sharma or David Warner were the final determinants.
How Cook survived the dismissal of head coach Steve Rhodes is now being questioned.
One bowling is probably a bit hopeful. Neither Mehdi Hasan nor Mohammad Saifuddin bowled well in the preliminary round, and Shariful Islam’s brilliant bowling in the match against the West Indies will also be appreciated.
However, Taskin Ahmed has become radiant in his own light by impressing everyone. The fact that he has really changed is evident in the last few series—eight wickets at an economy rate of 6.5 in that match. What is possible with this seemingly insignificant statistic? The ball in his hand means his fire.
Out-of-field debates were also associated with poor performance on the field throughout the World Cup. After the loss to Scotland, the board president publicly criticised three senior cricketers, with former captain Mashrafe bin Murtaza posting his status on Facebook, saying he considered the national team’s coaching panel to be a rehab centre.
Shakib Al Hasan’s wife has once again added fuel to the fire by writing about who was where during the 2019 World Cup. It can be assumed that these negative comments have had a negative effect.
All in all, the Tigers had a bird’s eye view of the semifinals before going to the World Cup. The performance of the last match was the worst. They had to stop in their second-lowest collection in T20 (63) that day. They had to stop below 100 in the previous match against South Africa. This means that the first batch to see less than 100 batches in this year’s World Cup, both of which were written by Bangladesh.
The World Cup has gone badly for Sri Lanka too, the dream of the semifinals was shattered just days before the end of the Super Twelve. However, analysts see no reason for the Sri Lankans to be disappointed with the team.
Attempts are being made to fill the void created by the departure of Jayawardene-Sangakkara-Dilshan with Charitha Asalanka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dushmanta Chamira or Pathum Nishanka. They have shown great performances in this World Cup, so Sri Lanka can dream of a golden future around them.
In terms of Bangladesh, Shakib Al Hasan (120), Mahmudullah (119), Mushfiqur Rahim (115) and Tamim Iqbal (116) were considered the best. But this batting was abandoned by T20 cricket 5 years ago.
The Stone Age cricket was supposed to be thrown away by the youngsters who came to the team playing fearless cricket. But they have also fallen into the vicious circle. Until 2019, Liton Das’s strike rate was around 140, coming down to 122. Soumya Sarkar, Afif Hossain Dhruv and Naeem Shekhara are also living in such 120 houses.
Mirpur’s wicket is also the reason for this declining phase of strike. In the last Australia and New Zealand series, they have tried their best to win by taking a breathtaking wicket for the batsmen at home. Mahmudullah Riyadh then said the habit of winning was real. His batsmen will have no problem adapting to a good wicket. But he seems to have forgotten that fact, not only to win but also to practice for good batting.
I want them to practice against quality bowling too. Seeing the jump of Bangladesh batsmen against South Africa, Creekviews said that the batting average of Bangladesh against high-speed bowling is only 9. The struggle of the batsmen against leg-spin can be seen with the naked eye. While all the teams are leaning towards wrist spinners and mystery spinners, there is no potential for anyone in the Bangladesh team.
Bangladesh should find a solution to these problems as soon as possible by passing another flop World Cup. But the culture of not going to the root of the problem that is going on in this country, that line sung by Chandrabindu has to be repeated, “The path is crooked, as far as the eye can see; just a mirage.”