September 22, 2003, 12:28 PM
Join Date: August 29, 2003
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Whatmore and Mahmud\'s assessments of the Pakistan Tour
Mahmud Not Disheartened 22/09/03
Pakistan Sees Improvement
Bangladesh captain Khaled Mahmud believes that his team have made progress, despite a clean sweep defeat to Pakistan in both the Test and ODI series.
"Definitely the outcome of the Test and one-day series is not encouraging," Mahmud admitted.
"But with the overall improvement shown on the tour, I am convinced cricket will go up in Bangladesh."
Bangladesh were hardly ever in with a shout in the ODI series, losing the matches by 137 runs, 74 runs, 42 runs, five wickets and 58 runs respectively.
In the Test series they were far more competitive, putting Pakistan under pressure in the second Test in Peshawar and almost winning in the third in Multan. The latter they lost only by one wicket.
"We tried our level best on the tour," Mahmud assured AFP.
"We came close to a win at Multan, but I am satisfied that the goals set before the tour were nearly achieved."
Bangladesh suffered greatly at the start of their Test career and many observers called for their full member status to be rescinded. However, countries such as India and New Zealand had to toil many years before earning their first win and the International Cricket Council has made no move to demote Bangladesh.
"The calls for our Test status to be taken back were unjustified," Mahmud argued.
"If you look back at our tour of Australia the improvement graph has gone up.
"I hope that players cash in on the experiences earned in Australia and Pakistan in our home series against England."
The England tour of Bangladesh begins on Tuesday 21 October with a Test in Dhaka. England play two Tests and three ODIs.
Whatmore Has Mixed Emotions 22/09/03
Coach Partly Pleased With Pak Tour
Bangladesh coach Dav Whatmore admitted disappointment with regard to the results of his team's tour to Pakistan, but insisted that individual players had made progress.
"I am satisfied the way team played in the Test series, but disappointed at not winning a one-day game," Whatmore explained.
Bangladesh competed well in the three-match Test series and on a few occasions looked like they might earn their first Test win.
However, the ODI series was far more one-sided. Pakistan claimed the series 5-0 and were only once under reasonable pressure.
"The objective is to keep on improving," Whatmore continued. "After this tour I know who can play in the longer run and I will sit down and work on that."
Javed Omar, Habibul Bashar and Hannan Sarkar all did credit to their reputations as batsmen. Alok Kapali and Rajin Saleh in particular showed good potential as allrounders, while Mohammad Rafique bowled well throughout the tour.
These achievements were recognised by Pakistan's coach Javed Miandad.
"Bangladesh was not the team we were expecting, they did not allow us to win easily," he told AFP.
"The way they have played here I think they will create a lot of problems for England."
The England series will be important for Whatmore, as the pressure on him would be greatly relieved by a win in front of his home supporters.
Since Whatmore has taken over, he has taken his team to Australia and now Pakistan. In that time Bangladesh have lost five Tests and six ODIs.