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IanW
June 1, 2004, 04:49 PM
Another early morning with cold toes and a smile on my face.

Bangladesh got the better of this draw. They batted well, restricted the West Indies to an acceptable score, and then their lower order faced the blowtorch after the top and middle order collapsed.

But the Pilot saw them safely to harbour with his maiden test century, helped by more than useful contributions from Rafique and Baisya ... going from 6-79 to 9-271 declared is a performance that doesnt just show skill and class, it shows guts and mental toughness.

For me, Rafique is man of the match, with his amazing first innings century taking Bangladesh's score from barely acceptable to excellent, then a workmanlike 3-90 off 36 overs in the Windies first innings, then playing sheet-anchor to Pilot's century.

All of Bangladesh's bowlers played well, and if catches had have been taken, then rather than having a session to bat and 300 to get, the Windies would have needed to bat all day chasing 330 or so.

As far as the batting goes, Bashar and Ashraful both got runs, and Saleh's second innings 50 with wickets falling all around him took courage and application.

The Bangladesh tail - their keeper and bowlers - contributed 289 runs this test. This is an unbelievable number out of eight, nine, ten and jack.

This is an important game for Bangladesh ; on the fifth morning, when the game was there to be lost, they simply refused to do so.

Once Mushrafe comes back, him and Baisya are a more than useful twin spearhead, and we know Rafique can take wickets.

Add to this batsmen who can get runs and a tail that can not merely wag but dominate, and you have a side that can win Test matches relentlessly, a session at a time.

Bangladesh won days 1 and 2, tied day 3, lost day 4 badly, and won day 5.

Hold those catches, or take the rain out of the equation, and Bangladesh are the only side that could have won this test.

As it was, they recovered from 6-79 to put the game safely out of reach for the West Indies.

Roll on the second test ... Bangladesh have got a series to win.

Flip Master Mick
June 1, 2004, 04:59 PM
I can only thank you for your inspirational comments about the tigers. Hearing positive remarks about BD cricket is a rarity and only limited to the views of partisan BD fans. We as a team can only improve from here and I am glad the seniors in the team, regardless of their batting order, are taking charge. It is my hope that in the near future BD will be a force to be reckoned with.

reverse_swing
June 1, 2004, 05:02 PM
Thank you Ian Whitchurch. You are awesome.

Zobair
June 1, 2004, 05:03 PM
IanW! your optimism makes my heart glow :) Tigers are a humble bunch of cricketers, but they have showed with the bat and ball that they will fight fire with fire. They won't back down and roll over. They will not wince and cower when hit by the 90 mph balls. This test will add valuable knowledge to the Tigers' growing stock of Test cricket IQ. Bring on 'bina!

[Edited on 1-6-2004 by pompous]

IanW
June 1, 2004, 05:23 PM
Originally posted by pompous
IanW! your optimism makes my heart glow :) Tigers are a humble bunch of cricketers, but they have showed with the bat and ball that they will fight fire with fire. They won't back down and roll over. They will not wince and cower when hit by the 90 mph balls. This test will add valuable knowledge to the Tigers' growing stock of Test cricket IQ. Bring on 'bina!

[Edited on 1-6-2004 by pompous]

Pompous,

It's not optimism. It's realism. It's how things actually are.

The scary thing for the West Indies, is they've now seen Bangladesh up close, and they realise they wont curl up and die.

Getting an opener cheap isnt enough. Their top order can take them to 2-121.

Working your way through their middle order for 250 isnt enough. Their tail can get them to 400.

6-79 isnt enough. Their tail can take them to 9-271 ... and have them declare.

Not good if you are a side known for folding under pressure.

Arnab
June 1, 2004, 05:54 PM
Yep. It is pretty real. I think the Windies team knows that too. I wish Dav were with us during the 2nd test.

AsifTheManRahman
June 1, 2004, 06:00 PM
And they also know that there's no use if Dav's not there...the players can still get us to a dominating position...our batsmen can still score centuries...