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Bashar extols Afghan cricketers’ patient style

Bashar extols Afghan cricketers’ patient style

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Jul 22, 2019 - 15:08

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): A more patient and accurate style of cricket by Afghans in current matches has surprised Bangladesh selector Habibul Bashar.

A media report said on Monday the method of Afghanistaninfo-icon-A's dominance of hosts Bangladesh impressed Bashar, who said their brand of cricket had been more patient.

Currently, Afghanistan lead the five-match one-day series 2-0 after their four-wicket win in Chattogram on Sunday, having already won the two-match four-day series 1-0.

Bashar said he was impressed by the way the Afghans played cricketing shots during their tricky 279-run chase, which was anchored by Ibrahim Zadran's 127 off 149 before Sharafuddin Ashraf and FazalNiazai blasted 37 runs in three overs to complete the victory.

Bashar said that Afghanistan played by the book during the four-day matches, the first of which they won by seven wickets.

"This Afghanistan side is playing a different brand of cricket, which has surprised me," Bashar told Kaler Kantho, a Dhaka-based Bengali daily.

"Their main team usually slogs the ball. They start going for big shots, but this team doesn't play like that. They are playing in the traditional way, which is very different.

“Even when they went for big shots in this game, they didn't just slog. They played good shots. They took 86 off the last eight overs against experienced bowlers like Shafiul [Islam] and [Abu Jayed] Rahi. This is a group of really committed cricketers."

On the flip-side, however, Bashar said he was worried about the Bangladesh’s performance in the series so far. There are 13 capped Bangladesh players among the 14 who have played in the two one-dayers.

They include Worldinfo-icon Cup squad members Mohammad Mithun, Sabbir Rahman, Rubel Hossain and Abu Jayed. From this squad, AnamulHaque and later Farhad Reza have been added to the senior side that is touring Sri Lanka.

Most of these players, according to Bashar, were picked on the back of excellent domestic showings from the last season, but it has not reflected in what is considered a step below international cricket.

"I am also wondering where the problem is," Bashar said. "This team is made up of proven performers at the domestic level.

“They have scored runs and taken plenty of wickets, but I can't figure out why they have been unable to perform against Afghanistan A.

"It is a matter of prestige, but also worrying, isn't it? The batsmen who played in the four-day matches all have 150-plus innings under their belt.

“They are now playing at almost the highest level, just below the senior team. They are in the A team because they have done well in domestic cricket. If they can't do well at this level, how will they do well at the next step."

Bangladesh A still have a chance to make a comeback in the three remaining one-day matches, to be held on July 24, 27 and 29.

nh/mud

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