Wednesday, February 8, 2017

How will Bangladesh deal with its 'Date with Destiny'?

Bangladesh playing its first Test match on Indian soil is a watershed moment in the game. 

Indicating an overdue acceptance into the inner sanctum of the game that will compel others to follow suit.

Historically, the Tigers have been essentially thrown under the bus by the ICC and other Nations with the scant support shown to them. After becoming the 10th Test playing Nation in 2000 little aid has been given in guiding them in their infancy.

To use a building analogy, if the ICC allowed Bangladesh a house and began building it for them, it started with the roof first rather than the foundations!

Rant aside...

How will they go facing India on home soil in what is arguably the toughest assignment in Test Cricket?

Bangladesh is a clash between real talent in its 11 opposed by the lack of know how in the toughest form of the game. This stood out in the series away to New Zealand, where they had periods of ascendancy to the point of even threatening stunning wins, only to be let down by their inexperience in Test cricket as characterised by lapses that ultimately killed them.

India at home is predatory to any sign of weakness as they brutally displayed in the recent smashing of England. Putting a real emphasis on the Tigers to stay the distance and raising the question whether they can due to their inexperience as well as the pressure exerted on them by the excellence of the Indians.

In Bangladesh's favour is their comfort in the conditions. They have a very able batting line up to contend with India's spinners, in fact, they have the potential to rankle the deadly duo of Ravi Ashwin/ Ravindra Jadeja. The key will be embracing a 'divide and conquer' mentality by taking on Jadeja to limit the pressure he exerts with his ability to dry up the opposition's runs. A key part of Kohli's gameplan at home as well as being pivotal in the associated success of Ravichandran Ashwin.

Tamim Iqbal at the top of the order will be crucial with the start he gets the team off too and the pressure his cavalier style could exert on the Indian attack.

Winning the tossing, batting first and scoring big will be key.

With it allowing Bangladesh's spinners the best chance to challenge the formidable Indian batting line up. Absurd as it sounds, it would provide a perfect stage for Shakib al Hasan to gain full respect and adulation for just how good he is, highlighted by the left arm spinner being a rare case of having a better away record than at home. The young off spinner Mehedi Hasan will also figure prominently with him standing out in the recent New Zealand tour for his traditional style leaving purist drooling witnessing his beautiful natural flight and loop.

His destiny is greatness, 400+ Tests wickets

The aside to this game is the local derby aspect

With it not having the same gravity and tension, but similar to the epic India versus Pakistan matches where both rise regardless of their current plight.

One can see the Bangladesh 11 honour bound to perform well ensuring a better than expected contest that will go into the 5th day with India prevailing in the end.

It is a pity it is a one off game, with the associated irony being that Bangladesh will offer a greater threat to India than the Aussies who will tour after who have been granted a 4 Test series. Despite, the Australians being whitewashed in their last three tours to Asia 

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