Sunday, June 25, 2017
Updated: Sunday, May 29, 2005
|Bangladesh at Lord?s: Some random thoughts|
Dr. Mahmudul Huq Khan
Those were the days of newspapers and radios. Those were the days when test matches would have a rest day on Sundays in England. So much has changed since then in the world of cricket, but Lord?s remain the ultimate ground were all cricketers want to play a test match.
In about a day and a half from now 11 cricketers from Bangladesh will get this historic opportunity to show to the world how far they have progressed in this elite class. While the cricketers may be passing nervous hours, there are so many things going on in the minds of people who follow this team. Will our players be overawed by Lord?s or may be, just may be, Lords? will bring out the best in them. This is only a collection of some random thoughts that come to my mind.
The final XI
The team make-up has always been the greatest pre-match source of fun and controversy among fans of team sports. We, here are no exception. Supporters choose team based on individual liking, their knowledge of the game, and in cricket - the condition of the pitch and weather, among other things. For this match, most of the fans in this board are of the view that we should go in with 3-pronge pace attack, probably in the form of Masri, Taposh and Rajib. These are our best 3 pace bowlers at the moment. But I am of the opinion that we, being the much weaker of the sides, can only try and spring surprise with our strongest suite ? which to me is our spinners. That would mean including Enamul, along with Rafiq as the specialist spinners.
I might just as well be proven wrong, but I am willing to take the gamble. In this case, of course one of Taposh or Rajib would have to be dropped. Aftab can do the medium pace stuff and might just as well be among wickets. He might be our future Mohinder Amarnath or Mudassar Nazar. This implies dropping Rajin, and that is a big decision that the team management will find hard to take. If we assume that England will bat for 125-150 overs it is more than likely that our pace bowlers will tire after bowling to them for that long. There is the distinct possibility that our spinners might be wayward as well, but I feel if the pace bowlers cannot control the swing we will be in much bigger trouble. I suppose the other players pick themselves without much debate.
The new kid factor
I, like many others, am hoping that Mushfiq will get the nod for the first test. The reason is simple, on the basis of the 3 matches (he played 2) in England he has outshone everyone else. He may be only 16 but he should be given the opportunity. So far so good. What scares me is the expectations of the fans. Test debut at 16 is a huge ask, that too, at Lord?s. And England in current form cannot be compared with the county teams that we played. So please do not expect too much from him. Let him play his game.
I am no expert, but from following the game for many years this is what I think.
One would expect a decent size Bangladeshi population to turn up on the ground. There will be millions more glued to the TV in Bangladesh, and an unknown number behind their computer monitors. Wherever we are, we are all hoping for a commendable performance by our team. We want them to fight till the last batsman and the last bowler. That is all that we want. There is no dearth of support for this team.
One final line for the supporters. The next couple of weeks might cause us many heartburns and some delight but let us take all in stride as after all this is only a sport.
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