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Old February 12, 2007, 11:08 AM
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Braveheart Braveheart is offline
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Join Date: March 16, 2006
Posts: 310

I don't think there is any tri series. This is what Daily star had to say...

Dilemma for Faruque
WC squad likely to be named tomorrow
Sports Reporter

The triumphant Bangladesh cricket team returned home today morning, only for a short respite before setting sail for the West Indies to play next month's World Cup.

Immediately after their arrival, the national selectors including coach Dav Whatmore and captain Habibul Bashar will sit to decide on the 15-member squad for the showpiece in the Caribbean which will start from March 13.

"We will meet tomorrow to decide on the World Cup team because there is hardly any time before the ICC deadline for the list," said chief selector Faruque Ahmed yesterday.

Bangladesh team, who have been pencilled in Group B along with India, Sri Lanka and Bermuda, is expected to fly for West Indies on February 20 to have a two-week camp before playing in the two lead-up games against New Zealand on March 6 and Scotland on March 8 both in Barbados.

The Tigers will launch their main campaign by taking on former World Champions India on March 17 before locking horns with 1996 champions Sri Lanka on March 21 and will round of their group fixtures by playing ICC associate member Bermuda on March 25.

Conquering Zimbabwe on their own soil was the main mission for Bashar's men although the just concluded trip was billed as preparation for cricket's mega event. And in the end they accomplished just that with a 3-1 series victory to maintain their recent supremacy over their southern African opponents.

Undoubtedly the 3-1 series victory not only relieved Whatmore charges ahead of the big task but also buried the bitter memory of their 3-2 series reverse in July-August last year. However, the manner of the victory failed to convince the selection panel boss.

"Winning is always important and the first-ever series victory in Zimbabwe is a boost for the team ahead of the World Cup. But I am not satisfied with the way we won the battle because it could have been much better had we completed it convincingly. What I honestly believe is that we need to prove that we are as good away as we are at home," said Faruque.

"We won the first match quite comfortably but lost the momentum in the second game to suffer a heavy defeat. We beat Zimbabwe in the last two games but not before we survived scares," he explained.
Despite the series victory the selectors will run the rule over a few debatable positions in the side and it is not unlikely that there may yet be surprises in the squad for the World Cup.

The former national skipper was reluctant to reveal anything about the selection but said that he was concerned about the opening slot as well the inconsistent performance of the top-order.

"I am really concerned about the opening batsmen's performance because in Zimbabwe they alarmingly failed to deliver. On the other hand nobody was inconsistent in the top-order," he said.

In four games, only the first match saw the opening pair of Shahriar Nafees (34) and Mehrab Hossain (12) reach double figure partnership as they put on 34. After two matches, Tamim Iqbal was drafted in place of Mehrab but it changed nothing as the openers continued to falter. Most worrying was the performance of Nafees who only managed one half century against his happy-hunting side.

There was good news though and the most inspiring outcome of the series might be the efforts of young wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim who justified the team decision of promoting him to the top order by making solid scores of 42 and 57 in the last two games.
His success has also put the selectors in a dilemma and the big question is whether they will rely only on the young stumper or go for both him and long-serving Khaled Mashud to avoid controversy. Faruque denied any comment on the issue but said that they have to extensively discuss with the team physio before deciding on a course of action for seaming all-rounder Mohammad Sharif.
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