Testing time for TigersStaff Correspondent
Bangladesh all-rounder Sakib al Hasan believes that the forthcoming Asia Cup will be good a testing place for the home team to see where they stand among the other Asian giants who are dominating the world cricket.
Bangladesh face former world champions Pakistan today in the opening match of the tournament where current World Cup champions India and runners-up Sri Lanka are also participating.
‘The competition will be a big challenge for us as it will also provide us with the opportunity to measure our ability when we play with some of the recognised forces of world cricket,’ Sakib told reporters at Mirpur on Saturday.
‘How we can improve our performance and where we are lacking or where is our level it can all be known from this tournament,’ added the all-rounder, ranked number one in the world both in Test and one-dayer.
‘Though Pakistan did not play good cricket in their last series they are a force to be reckoned with and more so when they are playing in Asia. India are a good team and Sri Lanka played well in Australia,’ said Sakib.
Sakib said that they are confident of putting up a good show against their mighty opponents as they are well prepared and all the players are brimming with confidence.
‘We know we didn’t play well against Pakistan recently when we had a series against them but this is another tournament. We had a very good preparation although we didn’t practise too much as a team but we were playing domestic cricket,’ he said.
‘I think the boys are having confidence and if we can play to our potential I am hopeful that we can do well. Our target is to play good cricket, to play the best cricket which we cannot play all the time but I think at home we a have chance,’ said Sakib.
Sakib said he has full faith in his spin attack and believed that if they can play well and get a good support from the batsman then they can get a positive result.
‘As for the spin department, I believe we have the ability to do well against any big team and we have proved it time and time again. I am hopeful that we can do it again in this tournament,’ said Sakib.
‘Pakistani spinners are very good but their pace attack is strongest among the four teams and it will be a big challenge for the batsmen. But I believe if we can put up a reasonable total then we can restrict them,’ said Sakib.
‘It, however, depends on which wicket you are playing. On some wickets 230 is a reasonable total while on others it can be 270 and it is determined in the first seven overs or so in the game. So we can’t say that before the game starts,’ he added.
Sakib said that he would hardly have any new gameplan for Pakistan against whom he was the only shining star in the last series and would be focussed on contributing for the team.
‘My gameplan will be the same, if I can contribute to the team that will be great. I will try my level best and that’s the way I play cricket,’ said the former skipper.
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