Friday, June 14, 2024

Tigers can save the match: Nasir

Bangladesh have shifted their focus from winning the second Test match to saving it after New Zealand posted a comfortable 137-run lead with two wickets remaining in their first innings at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on Wednesday. The Tigers had been confident in the first two days that they could earn a victory against the touring New Zealand side, but a massive century by Corey Anderson and some other contributions from the tail made them change their tune.
Though all-rounder Nasir Hossain insisted that there is still a possibility of victory, it was evident through his body language that he hardly believed it was still possible.
‘We have two days left, but because this is Test cricket, there are changes in the tone of the game. We have a chance to save or win this game,’ Nasir said at the press briefing at the close of the third day.
‘Pressure is quite natural; nothing comes easy at this level. We have to bat well in the second innings. We have to avoid the mistakes that we made in the first innings,’ he said.
‘We are disappointed because we fell short by 100 runs in the first innings. We hope it won’t be repeated in the second innings.’
‘We have to bowl them out first and keep them within a 160-run lead. If we then score around 300 in the second innings, we have a chance to win the Test match. If we can bat for a long time, we can force a draw,’ he added.
Nasir said that all the Bangladeshi spinners could not get anything out of the pitch because there was no sunshine to help break up the pitch.
‘The ball turns when it is new, but otherwise I don’t think the spinners are getting any help.
‘Because there hasn’t been much sunlight, the wicket is still good and fresh. A bit of sun would have helped deteriorate it a bit more.’
‘They have only one spinner, so if the sun is out, we will be in an advantageous position. They have four seamers, and the wicket is still fresh because it has been under covers.’
Nasir also dismissed the idea that the unbeaten 84-run ninth-wicket partnership between BJ Watling and Ish Sodhi was responsible for putting the Bangladesh team in the back seat.
Wicket-keeper Watling hit his fifth Test half century and leg-spinner Ish Sodhi scored his maiden Test fifty and together they hadded undefeated 84 runs for the ninth wicket to add misery into the Tigers dressing room.
‘We had a last-wicket partnership too. It is part
of the game. We got some chances but we couldn’t take them. But we hope to bowl them out tomorrow morning,’ said Nasir.
‘We just couldn’t take advantage of a good batting wicket. Some of our batsmen’s shot selections were wrong.’
Nasir also rejected the notion that a below-par performance of Sohag Gazi was the cause of the Tigers’ woes.
‘Sakib didn’t get many wickets in the first Test, but he got 5 wickets in this game. Everyone has his day, so I hope Gazi will bowl well tomorrow.’

-With New Age input

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