Friday, June 21, 2024

Ireland happy to comply?

Tigers indulge only in T20s
Bangladesh Cricket Board’s request to rearrange the fixture of the Tigers’ tour of Europe in July has received positive feedback, it was learnt yesterday.
After its meeting on Thursday, the board said they have made the request to Cricket Ireland to play five Twenty20 internationals instead of five ODIs keeping in mind preparation for the ICC World T20s in Sri Lanka in September.
“Not only have the cricket authorities in Ireland welcoming the change, they could schedule seven Twenty20s against Ireland as well as convince the Netherlands and Scotland,” said a BCB official requesting anonymity.
The original schedule was a ten-day trip to Ireland to play three ODIs and a practice game and another four days in Scotland where two matches were to be held against the hosts and the Dutch.
But what is worth looking is how the Tigers’ schedule will shape up ahead of the Sri Lanka event.
During the interim, they are likely to play four or five Twenty20s against Zimbabwe and South Africa during next month’s tri-series, seven (if Ireland agrees with the request) in Europe and three against Trinidad & Tobago, which adds up to a minimum of 14 matches in cricket’s shortest format.
It is designed to make the players stick to the format for four months running up to the World Cup, a strategy that didn’t really pay off ahead of the 50-over World Cup last year.
Bangladesh will be one of two countries who will solely play Twenty20s from June to September, although other countries like Australia, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and West Indies will play a mixture of Tests, ODIs and Twenty20s during the same time.
The Tigers are in Group D alongside New Zealand and Pakistan, both of whom will be involved in two full series respectively. The Black Caps will play four Twenty20s against West Indies and India alongside five ODIs and four Tests while Pakistan will be in Sri Lanka to play two Twenty20s, five ODIs and three Tests going into the Twenty20 world event.
Australia have six ODIs against England and Ireland during the summer and no Twenty20s scheduled, though most of their top players have taken part in the Indian Premier League while England and Zimbabwe will play four T20s each; Sri Lanka, India and West Indies three each and South Africa seven.
The counterpoint by those who push for such a one-tracked philosophy is the inconsistency of the Tigers in the shorter formats but there is no reason why they shouldn’t be well prepared by playing longer formats, even one-day games, ahead of a Twenty20 mega event.

-With The Daily Star input

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