Monday, June 05, 2023
Updated: Sunday, May 15, 2005
Bangladeshis vs. Sussex: First day report

Imtiaz Kabir

I had a bad day today! Each cup of tea cost ?1 and it was a bloody cold day. I needed many refills. And, oh, Bangladesh had a leather chasing day !!

Yardy: Yet another lefty prospers against Bangladesh

Thanks to the Brighton festival and what seemed like a Morris Mini car rally, I was delayed. When I finally made it to ground, about half an hour before lunch Sussex were on 102/1 and Talha had already got the dangerous Montgomerie.

For me, that was the best moment of the day! It got progressively worse.

I honestly did not see the batsman playing and missing more than half a dozen times. As my best position was third man-ish, I have to admit I was not best placed to see how many of those balls were due to good bowling. To give you an idea, I did not hear an appeal for at least two hours !

When I walked in Rajib was bowling at quite a pace. And occasionally, hurrying the batsmen. Other than that, at no time did I find any of the batsmen made to play a false stroke other than when Prior played uppishly to Aftab.

To sum up our bowling performance, I would have to mention that Aftab was the pick of the bowlers. He certainly got edges [not catches - but on a daylike this edges count as small victories]. And he bowled tidily. Yound Rahim looked good in an undemonstrative way.

I would not want to dwell too long about this day. We are all entitled to a bad one and I hope this will be the worst day of the tour. However, I would like to bring to the notice of the knowledgeable aficionado of something I noticed.

Young Rajib is fast , quite fast. He was a good yard or two faster than Mashrafe who was slower than his normal self. But, Rajib has a run-up longer than Holding's at his prime. About 40 yards ! As long as Shoaib's. So much so that in his last ten yards he actually does not accelerate. If he is not well advised I fear he will break down soon. He needs to cut down his run-up by almost ten yards.

What of our spin prodigy you ask? Watching through binoculars it appeared that Enamul was bowling virtually medium pace. This was disappointing considering I have been a great supporter of his ever since I saw him against England at Dhaka. I agree no one likes to get belted around but on this wicket, you as the Telegraph match report pointed out he is not likely to get any wickets by bowling flat.

Many have wondered if it was the wicket. Well, at lunchtime I walked out to the middle. The wicket looked a beauty but there was enough green on it for any seamer to trouble our lot.

At any rate, a flat pitch is normal for Hove. While on the topic of pitch, I do not how many of you are familiar about this ground but the Cromwell Road end has a big slope right to the bowling crease. Of course, until mid-afternoon our faster bowlers , of course, used this end. Enamul using the other end. That was understandable. However, a strong breeze was blowing at the pace bowler's face. So it was a no-win situation. Enamul also did not get much help from the breeze as he could not bowl into it as normally a spinner would prefer.

Tomorrow is going to be interesting. Remember Sussex has Lewry. If you do not know how he bowls, think of, Vaas, Collins, Pathan, Franklin. Need I say more...

More analysis on the Video Highlights related discussion thread.