Bangladesh lament lost opportunity

March 4, 2019

Bangladesh’s interim Test skipper Mahmudullah on Sunday lamented their woeful first innings batting performance, which he believed was a lost opportunity for them in the first Test against New Zealand in Hamilton.
The Tigers made a spectacular fight-back in the second innings owing to Soumya Sarkar and Mahmudullah, who each struck a hundred, though they could not prevent New Zealand from posting an innings and 52-run win and 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
Although Bangladesh scored 429 runs in their second innings, their highest second innings total on foreign soil, they had to suffer the massive defeat due to their batting in the first innings, where they collapsed from 121-1 to 234 all out.
New Zealand made the best use of their conditions as their all three top-order batsmen scored a hundred guiding the side to their highest ever Test total of 715-6d for massive 481-run first innings lead.
Bangladesh were unable to wipe out the deficit despite a fine effort from Soumya and Mahmudullah as they conceded their eighth straight Test defeat in New Zealand.
‘I feel we missed an opportunity in the first innings. We needed another big innings from someone, and then the result would have been different,’ Mahmudullah told reporters after the match.
‘You have to play tough cricket in Tests. There will be good spells from both ends, so one has to understand these things. I think we took the easier options in the first innings and got out. I did it. [Mohammad] Mithun did it. Some other batsmen also got out in the same fashion,’ he added.
Opener Tamim Iqbal made 126 off 128 balls but Bangladesh collapsed after his dismissal losing eight wickets in two sessions on a flat batting pitch.
Mahmudullah was content with their second innings performances which he believed would give them some confidence in the second Test in Wellington, starting on March 8.
‘I think batsmen will be feeling positive leading into the second Test,’ Mahmudullah said, who scored 146 runs in the second innings to notch up his second Test hundred at this venue, third overall in international cricket at Seddon Park.
‘Soumya’s role was important at that time. He was batting with good rhythm and he was taking risks. He was hitting boundaries and disturbing the bowler’s line and lengths. He was doing that successfully. Our partnership was growing nicely,’ he added.
Mahmudullah shared 235-run with Soumya (149) as the duo frustrated New Zealand for a long period. The 33-year old revealed that their plan on the fourth day paid off.
‘I didn’t want to give away wickets in the first hour of the play. If we can survive the first hour, we knew we will finish it off nicely,’ he said.
‘I took time. I knew when the bowlers get tired that is when I will take my chances. They were bowling bouncers and yorkers when I was batting, I was well aware of that.
‘[Neil] Wagner was very good with his back of the length deliveries. He was trying the bowl bouncers. Boult, Southee were trying to swing the new ball. I guess that’s what their process is.
‘When the ball was new, they try to swing it and then when the ball gets older, they bowl bouncers. Our batsmen are well aware of that. Hopefully, we will keep that in mind in the next test match,’ he added.

-With New Age input

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