Openers and Batsman No.3
It is now plainly obvious to everyone that our top-order batting collapse is because we fail to take the shine off the ball. With the ball barely 1/2 overs old, batsman number 3 virtually becomes the opening batsman. Now batsman number is 3 is usually the best batsman in the team who can cope with the old and new ball alike. However our captain Bashar is not that comfortable with the new ball. All his scores have been when the ball was couple of overs old. So with the ball relatively new, he faces the possibility of losing his wicket cheaply. The loss of his wicket so early in the innings has a ripple effect on the following batsmen who lose their wicket in the same fashion. BECAUSE OF THEIR INABILITY TO DEAL WITH THE REALTIVELY NEW BALL. When Pilot and the tail comes in, the ball is relatively old, and its easier for them to deal with it. That is the key reason why Pilot and our tail have been so consistent. All credit to them for their grit and patience.
In this light, we need to assess our opening batsmen and batsman number 3. I am of the opinion that we should try with 3 specialized openers. That is two openers opening the innings and the third opener coming on as batsman number 3. The primary responsibility should be to take the shine off the ball without losing any wicket. Nafis and Rajin can be tried as openers. But we need to sort the batsman number 3. There is no point sending Rafiq to blast the ball or anyone else. Unless the ball is 15/20 overs old we would continue to experience these batting collapses, whether it be ODI or test. In the event of early fall of an opener, at least another specialized opener (batsman number 3) would be able to see the fast bowlers off. I dont know who the 3rd opener should be, but its worth a try, isnt it under the circumstances? Maybe we can look at the domestic league, see who has fared the most as an opener against the top bowling side, give him a chance in the warmup match against Zimbabwe and see how it goes.