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chinaman
August 4, 2004, 05:00 PM
Realistically we target 220-230

Bishwajit Roy

A year into his job as chief national selector, Faruque Ahmed has conceded that the current crop of cricketers forming Bangladesh's one-day international squad are not ideally suited to take on the big boys.

But the situation is down to lack of resources rather than anything else believes the former Bangladesh captain.

Smarting from a pathetic showing by the side he chooses in the recently concluded Asia Cup in Sri Lanka, Faruque, whose selection committee completed it's first year this month acknowledged that most often they had to settle for what little was available to them in terms of talent.

"We picked the best available side under the circumstances for the Asia Cup. Unfortunately there is hardly any scope to bring major changes in the team considering the reserve strength," said Faruque while talking with The Daily Star Sport yesterday.

The 38-year-old, who ended his playing career only last season, thought the problem stemmed from a weak domestic structure which is not ideal for producing quality cricketers. It is also the reason for Bangladesh not having a formidable second string or an A team.

"Unless local competitions like the Dhaka Premier Division and the National Cricket League become more competitive, we will continue to struggle for back-ups. It is the responsibility of the authorities to come with a regular calendar of events. They must also think of a format that would ensure standard cricket. To do that, matches must be played on proper wickets and good grounds which is hardly the case at the moment.

"When we try to select the A side we struggle to complete the list as we don't get enough names who can push the national players. So we end up including cricketers from the national pool in the A team. We are looking at the High Performance Unit of the BCB to narrow the gap but I must insist again that without competitive domestic cricket we simply can not achieve anything," said Faruque.

On the performance of his selection committee so far, Faruque felt it has been a mixed bag.

"There has been ups and downs over the last 12 months. The boys showed definite signs of improving against Australia, Zimbabwe and the West Indies. But the Asia Cup came as a shock for me."

The present committee gave no less than 10 players their international debuts and Faruque revealed that with the exception of opening batsman Moniruzzaman and off-spinner Jamaluddin Babu, the others are still either in the side or in contention. But the selectors have been perplexed by chronic top order batting failure which is seriously hurting the Tigers especially in the limited overs matches. Faruque lamented the scenario in which they have been forced to pick bits and pieces allrounders to strengthen the batting while compromising with the bowling department and overall balance of the side.

"The continuous failure of batsmen has prompted us to experiment with a stop-gap bowling attack. But it has been very frustrating watching all our plans go in vain. There is no doubt about someone like (Alok) Kapali's talent but tell me what has he done in the recent past?" said Faruque.

"Besides, we can not give excuses of inexperience in ODIs after 93 games. After four years of Test cricket and a decade of one-dayers, you don't see much difference in the basic thinking of the cricketers. The real talents in the side should come out of the habit of playing 'satisfactory' 30s and 40s and start going for hundreds to show what they are made of," he added.

Despite the negative cloud, Faruque is sure that the current team had the ability to play much better cricket than they have displayed in Sri Lanka.

"I agree with coach Dav Whatmore that we underachieved in the competition. I also beg to differ with those who commented that we only showed improvement against weaker opponents like Zimbabwe and the West Indies. Mind you, it's not at all easy for any international side to take on the Windies on their home soil."

Faruque put his weight behind Whatmore.

"The team's bowling, fielding, fitness has improved a lot under his supervision. Dav is a very good motivator but at the end of the day, the individual has to sort out his own game."

The chief selector was straightforward when asked about the logic of sticking with a grafter like Rajin Saleh in ODIs, especially at an important position like number four.

"Let's face it. Realistically, we do not expect to post scores of 260 or 270 in the present context. Rather, we target in the 220 - 230 region. From that point of view Rajin is a very important player considering his ability to stay at the wicket after a quick loss."

Faruque was asked to comment on left-hander Faisal Hossain whose technique has been found wanting in the international arena despite his reputation as a heavy scorer in domestic cricket.

"It is too early to pass judgement on him as he has just played five matches. He is a stroke-maker which is an essential quality to have in the one-day game. However, the basics are very important too in any form of cricket."

Bangladesh skipper Habibul Bashar, a consistent run-maker in Tests, has not impressed Faruque in one-dayers.

"There is huge difference between his Test and one-day performance. He is a definite underachiever. He must improve his one-day game to justify his talent. It is for his own good that he does something about it because he is the captain and should try to lead by example."

Regarding questions being raised in a section of the media about Tigers' new Australian trainer Justine Cordy's tough fitness regime which some people believe hampered the players' performance in Sri Lanka as they were too tired, Faruque dismissed the suggestion.

"I don't buy that as a reason. I think Justine's method perfectly suits modern day cricket. Besides, no one should complain about hardship as I don't see too many players train in their own time apart from maybe a couple."

About his next course of action, Faruque said that he will be considering making at-least three changes in the team for next month's Champions Trophy to be held in England with a look to the future. Bangladesh have been pitted in a group along with the West Indies and South Africa in the tourney.

"I am not focusing too much on the Champions Trophy. I am more interested in finding the right blend for the hectic home season that is coming. I believe we will get a clear idea about our ideal combination after the three series' against New Zealand, Sri Lanka and India."

Daily star >> (http://www.thedailystar.net/2004/08/05/d40805040135.htm)

[Edited on 8-4-2004 by chinaman : typos, thanks nasif.]

Nasif
August 4, 2004, 05:03 PM
Rafique? shouldn't it be "Faruk's Evaluation"? ;)

suds
August 4, 2004, 05:06 PM
And where would be Rafique's part?

chinaman
August 4, 2004, 05:45 PM
Originally posted by nasif
Rafique? shouldn't it be "Faruk's Evaluation"? ;)

Yes. Corrected. Thanks a lot for pointing that out. Getting older and older ..

Bengal_Tiger
August 6, 2004, 02:39 PM
"When we try to select the A side we struggle to complete the list as we don't get enough names who can push the national players. So we end up including cricketers from the national pool in the A team. We are looking at the High Performance Unit of the BCB to narrow the gap but I must insist again that without competitive domestic cricket we simply can not achieve anything," said Faruque.

I agree with his comments, why it is happening? What you guys think about?

[Edited on 7-8-2004 by Bengal_Tiger]

SS
August 6, 2004, 03:16 PM
[Edited on 7-8-2004 by SS]

Bangla Mostan
August 6, 2004, 03:49 PM
What we need is some honest working people in the Cicketing board, not with someone who has a big stomach..cos you know if someone who has a big stomach..must be a corrupt takin worker..so if we can have some honest workers there..then we can see some true cricketing legends for our Bangladesh.:fanflag:

sageX
August 7, 2004, 03:36 AM
"When we try to select the A side we struggle to complete the list as we don't get enough names who can push the national players. So we end up including cricketers from the national pool in the A team. We are looking at the High Performance Unit of the BCB to narrow the gap but I must insist again that without competitive domestic cricket we simply can not achieve anything," said Faruque.


Faruque stated the main difficulty of his job. He is the selector and he doesn't have a pool of player from which he can select. Without domestic leage how can he observe all the players performance?

I mean I have so many points to say. Our BD youngstar could learn so much if they could face Rafiq, Razzaq, Tapash in domestic leage. Bowler would be better if they could bowl to Ash, Rana and Bashar.

Very deep disposition. Bangladesh performance wil go worse in future for the lack of new comer. We need new comer bad. BD situation is not any better then Kenya when it comes to pool of new players. Atleast Kenya has an existing good team.

Bengal_Tiger
August 7, 2004, 08:45 AM
Originally posted by sageX


Very deep disposition. Bangladesh performance wil go worse in future for the lack of new comer. We need new comer bad. BD situation is not any better then Kenya when it comes to pool of new players. Atleast Kenya has an existing good team.

I do agree with you. If this is the situation what the hell is doing the highly-paid BCB guys?

AsifTheManRahman
August 7, 2004, 09:44 AM
IMPROVED DOMESTIC CRICKET!!!!

That's what I've always thought our problem is...unless we improve our domestic leagues, and enable our national team players to play more in those leagues, we will not achieve anything. We need to get them quality players to play against at home in order to improve their game, so that they can whip the big guns.

sageX
August 7, 2004, 11:33 AM
My good friend Rufy used to play for his school in Nirman Cricket. He was 6 ft tall, heavy. He used to come to our soccar ground in our 'para' and brag about his 6', 4's and wickets. We decided to go and check it out next time. We went to dhanmondi cricket ground to see his game. He played okay. Got some 4's. He got 2 wkts that day. It was exciting. exciting for us who were cheering for our friends. Players were pumped up to get a win for their school. It was fun cricket. I watched couple of other game of nirman cricket. Our school didn't play in Nirman so I was very upset. Evantually I made it up when I went to NotreDam college. Rufi ended up playing in second division for Shantinagar club when he was in college. Life's priority pulled him out of cricket and threw him in the real life. He was a good talent.

Bashar, Pilot and shujon all are product of Nirman school cricket. They came to first division directly from school. They were sponsored by the company Nirman. Nirman team sponsored this players good. All the cricket related expenses was taken care for them and they were paid too.

Our first division was exciting too. I watched Abahoni, Mohamaden game so many times. There were two tournament each year. I think, President Cup and Jatio leage. Nannu and Bulbul used to play for Mohamaden. Akram was captain for Abahoni. Pakistan and Indian test crickter were plenty in our leage. Wasim Akram played for us. Yes! the Wasim Akram played for our domestic leage. Raman Lamba was here. Shidu was here. I heard it was Lamba who advised Rafiq to swith to spin from pace. That advice worked out nice for Rafiq. He couldnot substitute this experiece with anything. That's the time Bangladesh cricket started to win in ICC. It was so exciting time. There is nothing there anymore. In our para's mutth now there are multistory buildings.