ICC World Cup 2019May, 16, 2019
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Bangladesh need more focus on tactics than technique: McKenzie
Bangladesh batting coach Neil McKenzie believes his side needs to acclimatise to the pitches more than the prevailing cold in order to succeed in Ireland and England. The visitors began their campaign in Ireland on the wrong foot, losing to Ireland A by 88 runs in their only practice game ahead of the tri-series involving Ireland and West Indies, their last platform to prepare for the World Cup.
"The experienced guys know whatever it takes to play in different conditions," McKenzie told reporters after the warm-up match. "I don't think it's the cold, its mainly the surfaces. Your lines change, lengths change and also your scoring opportunities change. So it's not the weather it's more the surface, the pitch condition and the various types of bowlers you will be facing."
That said, Bangladesh do have some cold weather to contend with. While they practiced in the hot and humid conditions in Dhaka, they were surprised by the chilling weather in Ireland that goes to down to two degrees at night while remaining in the bracket of 10 to 11 degrees during the day time.
Whether due to weather or not, Bangladesh bowlers lacked clarity of line and length in the warm-up game. They leaked 307 runs in the 50-over affair, only for their batsmen to disappoint too. Most of them got a start but no one was able to play a match-defining innings.
Tamim never looked at ease in the middle as he failed to take his chances despite being dropped at gully. He was eventually out for 21 runs, failing to negate a ball on off-stump bowled by Getkate.
Liton Kumar (26 runs) was caught behind as he tried to play a defensive stroke while Mushfiqur Rahim (11 runs) was caught at backward point and Mithun (13 runs) at long on.
The remaining hopes vanished quickly when stocky medium pacer Kane claimed two wickets in quick succession by removing Shakib (54 runs), his under-edge brilliantly taken by the wicket-keeper, and followed that by removing Sabbir Rahman for a duck.
These dismissals once again raised questions over the technique of the Bangladesh batsmen. McKenzie though said that it was more tactic than technique which was going wrong for Bangladesh. "They all sort of back their own abilities. You know England wickets aren't as quick as South Africa and Australia, so I don't think it's the technical side that we have to worry about. Obviously bowling in England, for the slower ball bouncer there is a bit of grip, so you have to try to hit square of the wicket," McKenzie said. "In Bangladesh, you can just throw your hand at the ball and try to get slightly leg side whereas in England, you try to get to the pitch of the ball, try to get on top of it, try to hit as late as possible." Talking about the preparations for the World Cup, McKenzie highlighted the experience of the coaching staff in England, and how it keeps Bangladesh in good stead. But he also said that the players, despite all the coaching and guidance they can provide, will need to find a formula that works for them best.
"There are different technical aspects that we touched on. Obviously Steve Rhodes is from England and he knows the English condition really really well. He knows the county pitches and conditions as well. Courtney Walsh played in England for many years, I played in England for five years, so we will try to access the sign of the different wickets and conditions and plan accordingly. We will try to prepare the guys as best we know how and give them what we think is the best formula but they will have to formulize themselves.
"These guys are quality players. If you give them enough time at the crease, they will formulize on their own. We are just trying to fast track that. We just came from New Zealand, we now have the tri-series and some of the warm up games to prepare ourselves, so we will prepare our best in the next three weeks. Acclimatization is a huge factor. There are some guys who have come from BPL. But at least we have come here early. Trying to keep the guys fresh. I am sure we will be fine,'' McKenzie concluded.