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T20 World Cup

Mahmudullah and Co. ready to prove themselves in upcoming T20 extravaganza


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Photo: Courtesy

|| CF CORRESPONDENT ||

Bangladesh has made a big leap in the T20 ranking 10th to 6th by winning the Australia and New Zealand series. The representatives of the red and green teams are taking part in the T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and Oman in October.

In an interview with Cricfrenzy's Abid Mohammad, the 35-year-old said he is ready to show the world Bangladesh is a dangerous side on their day in this shorter format under his leadership in the forthcoming T20 World Cup. The following are passages from the book:

Cricfrenzy (CF): What is the pattern behind using 3-4 bowlers especially spinners during powerplays at home and away? Is it a plan to put batsman in a dilemma?

Mahmudullah: There is no such pattern. The moment I think I need to bring this bowler, I try to bring that bowler. Of course not the first over or the second over or the third over, especially in the power play, how I will manage those overs and at the same time when the team need wickets, when to use those wicket options is on thought always. But I always try to do what the team needs to do considering the condition.

CF: Is there a possibility that this plan will continue in the power play in the World Cup? Or will something new be seen considering the opponent and the wicket?

Mahmudullah: See, the combination of our bowling will depend on the conditions in Oman or Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Alhamdulillah we have that balance in our bowling unit and we have that confidence in all the bowlers, any bowler can give the best service for the team at any time.

CF: Will these techniques work on against subcontinent countries, or the team have to rely on pacers?

Mahmudullah: Alhamdulillah the way our bowling unit is bowling in the last few series. So we, especially I am quite confident on the bowling unit and in home conditions such as spinners had more responsibility there maybe or pace bowlers will have more responsibility there. I am hopeful they are ready to take up that challenge and we have that confidence in the bowling unit. There is a belief that we can bowl well against any team.

CF: Will Bangladesh miss a leg-spinner in the WC?

Mahmudullah: Of course leg spinner is a viable option. But the way the spinners have bowled in the last few series, Mahedi (Hasan), Nasum (Ahmed), Shakib (al Hasan) and every spinner. Everyone did well. Since there is a squad of 15 people and all the spinners in our final squad can do well in any condition. I hope they can give their best.

CF: Are you satisfied with the squad, or do you want to make any changes?

Mahmudullah: Our World Cup team is quite balanced from all sides. Its a balanced team in all aspects. We will try to maintain this balance in the team and everyone can perform.

CF: The last time we played in Dubai-UAE we played in the final (Asia Cup). Do you think we will benefit from those tracks?

Mahmudullah: Of course we played in Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the 2018 Asia Cup. There we played the final. That result will surely give confidence. Nothing is certain in T20. Every match is different, the condition of each match is different and the opponent is also different. So we have to face those challenges and move forward match by match.

CF: What is your expectation from the youngsters in the squad?

Mahmudullah: Those who got the opportunity in the team got the opportunity by performing according to their qualifications. Everyone, senior and junior, must have responsibilities. And the responsibility must be shared equally among all. Young talents like Shamim (Hossain), Afif (Hossain), Shariful (Islam) are all ready for the World Cup. I hope they will do something good for Bangladesh by playing their natural game.

CF: Can Mahedi Hasan play the role of floater in T20 WC?

Mahmudullah: Mahedi is a very good option. He will be able to bat in the top order. We played together, played in same team. He is a very effective batsman. His ability is also good in the lower order. He is a very good all-rounder. Hopefully he will play his best game in the World Cup.

CF: Shakib-Mustafiz said their IPL experiences will benefit the team. Do you agree?

Mahmudullah: It is a very good aspect that Shakib and Mustafiz are playing in IPL. I pray they will do their best for their respective teams. That confidence will definitely come in handy when they join us. They will be able to share with us what the conditions are like there. I hope we can use this information to play our best cricket.

CF: Who could be the trump card for the side, except Shakib?

Mahmudullah: Shakib is definitely a trump card. His presence in the team greatly enriches the balance of the team. Cricketers like Shakib are important in any team. He has been playing for Bangladesh brilliantly since he was playing for the team. We got proof of this in the 2019 World Cup. Hopefully he will be our trump card again in this World Cup. Hope he will continue his good form. I hope he will play very well and seal  victory for the country.

CF: Will WC Bio-bubble cause any negativity to team’s performance?

Mahmudullah: Of course ‘bio-bubble’ is much harder. But we have to accept it and move forward. Because it is our security issue. I hope it won't be a block. Now we have adapted fairly. Several days before leaving, we had the opportunity to spend time with the family. Hopefully all the cricketers will be fresh and fit as well as going to play in the World Cup.

CF: Is there any difference between Vettori and Herath’s coaching style?

Mahmudullah: You see, all coaches have their own style of coaching. Daniel (Vettori) had his own style when he was the coach and Rangana (Herath) has different types of coaching. They are both 'highly qualified' coaches. They are very experienced. I hope our spinners learn a lot from their knowledge and experience. I hope, they will be very effective for our spinners. Their knowledge will help make our spinners confident.

CF: As a captain, would you personally want to send a message to the world that Bangladesh should not be taken lightly?

Mahmudullah: Of course, there were challenges. There was the challenge of adapting to this format. In the last few series, we have won the series by playing good cricket. We are able to do well in this format. It's a big stage. I think if the opportunity arises, this World Cup is the best stage to prove our ability. And I think everyone is ready to take on this challenge. If we can do something good on a certain day, it is possible for us to achieve something good.