Bangladesh put an all-out effort to get themselves ready for the barrage of short pitch bowling when they face West Indies in their next match of the World Cup in Taunton.
The Tigers played no other team so frequently in the recent past as West Indies and were fully aware of what to expect from the Caribbean side during Monday’s game.
West Indies’ quick bowlers bowled out Pakistan for just 105 runs and they applied the same tactics unsuccessfully against Australia and England in their next two complete matches.
Against Australia at Trent Bridge, they played with five fast bowlers and used their only spinner Ashley Nurse for just five overs and similarly against England at the Rose Bowl their pacers shared 45 overs.
The Caribbean are unlikely to change their game plan against Bangladesh, which prompted the Tigers to invite some quick bowlers in their net for practicing against short bowling.
‘Normally, before every match you try to practice keeping mind what the opponent will bowl against you. In most of the games they [the opposition] target us with short balls,’ said opening batsman Tamim Iqbal.
‘Especially West Indies, whether it’s Australia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka or Pakistan, in the first 10-15 overs they focus more on this. We need to keep in mind that they will bowl short balls, but they also give you run-scoring opportunities… so, probably we have to prepare for both.
‘That is why we are trying to do the hard work in practice, so that it doesn’t become a surprise for us,’ added Tamim.
Tamim found a change in West Indies’ game plan than how they played against Bangladesh in the recent tri-series in Ireland.
West Indies fielded an under-strength squad in Ireland but came to the World Cup with a formidable line-up that included several pacers with an ability to bowl over 140km speed.
‘It’s very simple. You can clearly see that in the first 10 overs in their bowling they are focusing a lot on short balls,’ said Tamim, insisting that Bangladesh’s only option during this phase is waiting for the loose balls.
‘As I said before not only short balls as a batsman you have to be ready for the run-scoring opportunities that they give. If you can handle the initial pressure then you can cash in on the opportunity they present later, which would be very good for us,’ he said.
The small ground in Taunton could be encouraging for West Indies’ power-hitters, though it did not scare Tamim, who seemed ready for the challenge.
‘What I feel is that a lot of the times the smallest of grounds seem big and the biggest of grounds seem small,’ said the opener.
‘It depends on whether you are in the right form or not. So we don’t need to think too much about it. We know that they have power hitters and they can hit sixes at any ground, whether it’s big or small.
‘If we can remain focused on our own plans and not think too much about these things, it will be better for us. We can’t control the size of the grounds. It would be better for us to remain focused on what is in our control,’ he said.
Source: New Age.