Our batting heroics during the world cup
The obvious failures against WI and SA clearly eclipse the real picture of our batting heroics during this world cup. We can try to analyze it match-by-match and see how we did really do.
1. Against India (283):
It was fascinating to see how Imrul started the innings. I have always wanted that we attack from both ends so that the opposition bowlers do not get any respite. This was a very good approach especially when we were trying to chase a big total. Junaed scored his usual 37; but Shakib and Tamim kept us in the match for a long time. But our PP strategy and team selection (lack of big hitters) got us down at the end. Ireland won the match against England taking the batting PP at the right time (reducing the rrr from near 9 to 7), while we scored only 47 runs in the last 10 overs. The score of 283 looks good on paper; but we have seen the team management adamant to solve these two issues.
2. Against Ireland (205):
It was another batting failure with no one having a reasonable contribution. Mirpur is a patience track, Sehwag in his innings of 175 was never aggressive, while our openeners wanted to hit everything like Hong Kong sixes. The Irish must be kicking themselves for throwing this match away. When Kevin played that lazy pull they needed only about 3.5 runs per overs. On our part, Shafiul and Ashraful the bowler did the job. It was a shame that instead of Shafi a wicket-thrower got the man of the match prize.
3. Against WI (58):
This was our most important match for the world cup. West Indies is not an able team against spinners and from our experiences of this pitch, we should have known that anything above 200 could be a winning score against them. All we needed is to see off the new ball. But ....
4. Against England (227/8):
The bowlers did a good job against a reasonably strong batting lineup. Our chase started well. Imrul played a very good innings and Tamim's jodi-laiga-jay worked until he was out. Shakib played a sensible innings to hold things together after a mini-collapse. But when everything was going towards the right direction, he threw his wicket away for an unncessary sweep. That is the opnening England needed and they came back strongly. At the end we needed a miracle innings from Shafi to chase down this small total.
5. Against Netherlands (166/4):
Bowlers did the job restricting the Dutch for 160. Imrul-Junaed and Nafees batted well to chase it down in 41 overs. I was pretty impressed with SN's performance. He tried to start like Afridi; but adapted quickly when he failed to do so. But he should have stayed till the end. Both he and Junaed got out in 30s (the old problem never got corrected), while IK played a very well-measured innings.
6. Against SA (78):
It was not easy to score 285 against a potent bowling attack, even though there were no Steyn or Morkel or Kallis (the bowler). The players succumbed under pressure.
So, in short we had major problems in batting even in our wins. Those problems include the inability to sustain under pressure against not-so-soft opponents, proper team combination (e.g., SN was not in the XI-plan also during the practices), lack of team plan (e.g., batting PP, opening or middle order or lower order batting), team selection (no #4, no quick scorer for PP). We certainly have more problems than the obvious ones (58 and 78). Similar things happened also in our all-conquering NZ series. But everything was eclipse by our apparent success. After the world cup, our players and management are trying to term these two failures as one-off things, while highlighting 3 wins as perfect or near perfect. I hope, they understand the overall picture and take corrective measures.
Last edited by Baundule; March 28, 2011 at 04:15 AM..