Women’s Asia Cup begins today
Sports Desk : dhakamirror.com
Bangladesh women’s cricket team wants to play as a unit so that they can retain the crown of the Women’s Asia Cup starting today in Sylhet.
Hosts Bangladesh will begin their campaign when they take on Thailand in the opening match of the tournament at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium.
In the other match of the day, India will play against Sri Lanka at the same venue. GTV will telecast both the matches live at 9:00am and 1:30pm respectively.
After Pakistan’s tour in October 2018, these matches will be the first women’s internationals played in the country. This will be the first time that Sylhet will be hosting women’s international matches since the 2014 T20 World Cup.
However, Bangladesh captain Nigar Sultana Joty thinks being the hosts and playing the regional tournament on home soil will not add any pressure to the team, and they just want to go ahead match by match while trying to carry out their plans.
‘We are not thinking of it [playing on the home ground] as an added challenge. We want to play match by match and are looking forward to implementing our plans properly on the field’, Joty told reporters on Friday.
Bangladesh currently holds the Asia Cup trophy, as they defeated India in a thrilling final in Kuala Lumpur in 2018.
Being the defending champions, the captain of Bangladesh believed that there was no going upward from here. Since they have already won this trophy in the last edition of this tournament, the only task they would be looking forward to is retaining the title.
‘Since we have been playing well for quite some time now, and this trophy was ours before, we don’t have the scope for improvement. So, our goal is to retain the trophy, and we can achieve that if we keep playing good cricket.’
Joty wasn’t worried about the improvement of other participants, as, according to her, the Bangladesh team has quite improved as well.
To win every match in the tournament and eventually the trophy, the captain wanted to play their own brand of cricket by executing their plans and playing as a team in each match.
She wanted the whole team to contribute to each of the matches to get the desired outcome.
‘Whenever we win a match, you will see that the whole team contributed something to that. Whenever one individual played really well, and the others underperformed, we didn’t get to win those matches. Instead, little contributions from everyone got us the wins, and we want the same in the Asia Cup too,’she said.
Joty also talked about her own form and the inclusion of pacer Jahanara Alam in the squad. She believed the team became much stronger with the inclusion of the former captain.
She herself also wanted to make a significant contribution to the team in the tournament.
‘I always plan to play as per the demands of the team and the situation. I am in a good flow right now, so I want to contribute well as per the team’s situation and demand’, Joty concluded.