Mirpur (Bangladesh), June 22:
Savouring their first-ever series win against India, Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza paid tributes to coach Chandika Hathurusingha for their newly adopted fearless approach in matches.
The hosts put on a dominating all-round show to win the second One-Day International (ODI) comfortably by six wickets on Sunday after an equally commanding display in the first for a 79-run victory two days ago at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium here, reports bdnews24.com.
Mashrafe, who has been an inseparable protagonist for Bangladesh cricket since 2001, has witnessed how they fell and rose over the years. The 31-year-old has led Bangladesh to a new era by dealing a pride-puncturing blow to India.
“The boys now play fearless cricket which is the biggest change I have seen at the moment. No one is afraid to play shots or to bowl with fielders up-close. Cricket is a mind game. We are playing it well now,” Mashrafe said.
Mashrafe is often credited with changing Bangladesh’s body language. The pacer, however, passed the kudos on to Hathurusingha.
“No matter what we say, nothing would’ve been possible without the coach at our side. I spoke to him before the World Cup. He said there is no alternative to playing aggressive cricket. After aggression brought success in the World Cup, the boys realised this is real cricket and this is how it should be played. Maybe we won’t always be successful but most of the times we will,” said the right-armer.
Despite victory in the series with a match in hand, Mashrafe has aligned himself to his coach’s view that Bangladesh can do much better. The Sri Lankan had expressed concern over his side’s performance before the second match, saying they had much room for improvement in all sections of the game.
Mashrafe, too, has voiced concern and wants more from his players.
“Winning a match doesn’t mean we played a perfect game. We lost three wickets after rain break in the last match (on Thursday). Today they had a partnership. We came back well. Nasir bowled very well but there is always room for improvement,” said the captain.
Mashrafe also shared Hathurusingha’s view that Bangladesh were better against Pakistan. “We played flawless cricket against Pakistan. No end to improvement. The more we improve, the better it is for us.” (IANS)