Bangladesh’s Mashrafe left with ‘what ifs’

If ifs and buts were candy and nuts it would be a merry Christmas for all or at least a happy new year for Bangladesh.

 

There were times during the opening T20I against New Zealand that Bangladesh looked like competing and there were also times when they looked woefully inept.

Twice they allowed Kane Williamson to get away with mishit slogs the first time Soumya Sarkar was too far in on the midwicket boundary and the ball cleared him before bouncing over the rope and the second time his lofted drive cleared Imrul Kayes at long off.

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza was left to rue what might have been after the clash.

He said: "Maybe [Sarkar] was 5-10 yards inside because that side of the ground was bigger.

"There weren't any instructions but he thought he could manage by backtracking, but he couldn't. I didn't really see whether Imrul Kayes was standing too far inside. You can call it a misjudgement but our best fielders were standing in those positions.

"Maybe they thought that they could adjust themselves as they were looking to cut off the twos. If any of those catches were taken, the game could have shifted towards us, especially the one in Shakib's over [the one that cleared Sarkar]."

Mashrafe was also critical of the batting unit that failed to support Mahmudullah who smashed 52 to get the Tigers to a decent score.

The skipper added: "The turning point was when we were 30 for four. It also put us back.

"If it hadn't been for Mahmudullah's unbelievable innings, we wouldn't reach 141.

"You would have seen that at least one batsman stepped up in our four international matches on this tour so far.

"But there wasn't a collective effort with two or more batsmen also making contributions. Nobody has been supporting the batsman who is doing well. I think this is becoming a turning point for us."

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