Shakib Al Hasan, the captain, claimed that Bangladesh’s performance against the West Indies in the St. Lucia Test lacked spirit. On the fourth day, which was cut short by weather, West Indies finished off their ten-wicket demolition of the visitors.
After falling six runs short the previous night, Bangladesh batted for a little over an hour before being dismissed for 186, giving the host team a target of 13 to win the series 2-0.
We Did Not Show Character: Shakib Al Hasan
Bangladesh’s top and middle-order once again gave way to a focused pace assault, and they entered the fourth day on 132 for 6. Shakib claimed that his team’s failure to hang onto their wickets at this level demonstrated a lack of game understanding.
“Considering this Test, we tended to lose wickets just before a drinks break, a lunch break or before the rain. If we didn’t lose these wickets, things would have been quite different. This is a part of game awareness. We weren’t as tough as we could have been, in terms of showing character in this Test match,” he said.
Before facing India in December, Shakib believed that the Test players needed to improve. Later this week, Bangladesh will begin its T20 season in preparation for the T20 World Cup, which will start in Australia in October.
Before the international competition, they will participate in the Asia Cup and a tri-series in New Zealand after playing T20Is against the West Indies and Zimbabwe.
“We have to improve in every department to do well in Tests. It is good that a big gap is coming up [before we play the next Test]. Those who are interested in playing Tests can improve themselves during this time. We really don’t have a new set of players who will do well immediately after coming to this level.
“If all of us, and a couple of the players from outside, can plan together, we might do well. Otherwise, we cannot expect a lot of changes if we continue to play the same way. We have to bring changes in many aspects, including our thinking.”
Have To Make Sure That We Don’t Lose At Home: Shakib Al Hasan
To rebuild confidence, the squad, in Shakib’s opinion, must stop routinely dropping games at home. Bangladesh has now dropped three straight Test matches, first at home to Pakistan and Sri Lanka, then on the road to the West Indies.
“Teams are mostly underdogs on away tours. Take New Zealand, for example. They are losing abroad. England lost in the West Indies. Australia are losing when they play abroad. The same for India. Teams lose in India too.
“So, we have to make sure that we don’t lose at home. Either we win or draw the matches. This improvement will help us when we are playing overseas. Maybe, we won’t win, but we will be competitive.”
Shakib brought out Bangladesh’s lack of a Test culture, which head coach Russell Domingo had also mentioned earlier in the year. He stated that in order to restore the culture, the team must plan ahead and execute well.
“You can’t really blame the players. The system in our country is this. Did you ever see 30,000 people come to see a Test match? It happens in every game in England. We don’t have a Test culture in our country. But we can’t give up on it.
“We have a responsibility to bring Test culture back to the country. We have to plan ahead, otherwise, we can’t get too far. I wouldn’t say that we don’t value Test cricket. But we don’t have good results. These two go hand-in-hand.”
Playing Against West Indies Will Be A Major Challenge: Shakib Al Hasan
Bangladesh will have a difficult series when they begin their T20 World Cup training with three T20 Internationals against the West Indies on July 2. Following their elimination from the T20 World Cup last year in the second round, Bangladesh lost to Pakistan 3-0 in November and drew 1-1 with Afghanistan.
“It is an important series as far as our preparation for the T20 World Cup is concerned,” Shakib said.
“We have the Asia Cup and the World Cup coming up. We don’t have much time left. Playing against West Indies will be a major challenge.
“If we do well in the T20s here, it will help us go to Sri Lanka [for the Asia Cup] with a good mindset. The Asia Cup will be tough as we will take on India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.”