Hathurusinghe wary of ODI backlash

Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusinghe is looking forward to facing a stiffer challenge from the Zimbabwean side in the five-match one-day internationals, giving his side an ideal platform for preparation ahead of the next ICC World Cup. Bangladesh complete their international commitments before the World Cup with the ODI series against Zimbabwe. Tigers are eager to replicate a performance that helped them earn a comprehensive Test series win against Zimbabwe, but according to the Sri Lankan, it won’t be an easy task against them. ‘Different format, so definitely it’s going to be competitive,’ Hathurusinghe told reporters at Chittagong on Tuesday. ‘Even the Test series — you can’t say it’s one-sided; they gave us a good run in the first Test. In the second Test, they were in the game and we played that moment really well.’ ‘I expect them to play differently because I think their bowling and batting suited one-day cricket.’ ‘At the same time, to me, winning is a part of it but the process is also there. The bigger picture for me is the world cup combination,’ he added.

Hathurusinghe was satisfied to see that his charges did well to recover from pressure and later execute the game plan according to the requirement — an issue over which he is working since taking over the reign of the Tigers. The former Sri Lankan assistant coach hardly could deliver anything special right away after his arrival to take up the role from Shane Jurgensen, who opted to quit over several issues regarding team. Hathurusinghe, who had been labeled as a tough taskmaster since his inception for following his gradual steps of making a team rule for the Tigers that dictates no one is bigger than the team — that initially backfired until they began to reap the fruits recently. ‘If you can remember, we played with two fast bowlers regardless of the wicket….we didn’t go by the past performance,’ said Hathurusinghe. ‘I think the batting, of course, was pleasing as our batters put runs on the board and handled pressure situations.’

‘When I came over, we sat down and talked about areas that concerned us very much.’ Hathurusinghe signaled improvement of Tamim Iqbal and Mahmudullah in particular. Tamim scored two centuries and showed his character by applying himself in trying times to reach the mile stone while Mahmudullah seemed to enjoy the number four position to score three half centuries. ‘I have been working with everyone. Tamim is the one who really showed something in the middle and Riyad [Mahmudullah] for that instance really batted well.’ ‘I am happy with most of the batters as they understand their roles now. They are comfortable with their roles.’ ‘It doesn’t mean that they are going to score runs every game because cricket is like that but as long as they know how to go about doing things, they will be successful more often than not.’

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