Friday 22 August 2014 

Do Bangladesh Have A Confidence Problem?

Is Anamul Haque the unluckiest man in international cricket?
Is Anamul Haque the unluckiest man in international cricket?
© REUTERS / Action Images
 

Bangladesh fans witnessed another disappointing match earlier this week when their side, after scoring 217 runs on a Carribean wicket which seemed to be bowler-friendly and reducing their opponents to 34 for five, still lost the game.

"What’s going on?" a completely frustrated Bangladeshi fan will ask.

Bangladesh is undergoing the unluckiest period in the history of their cricket. They now have the world record of losing the most matches in a row, but that doesn’t make me as sad as I am now to see the last 11 continuous defeats.

Bangladesh's sobering run

Since beating New Zealand on 3rd November 2013:

Bangladesh v Sri Lanka

17th February 2014: Lost to Sri Lanka by 13 runs
20th February: Lost to Sri Lanka by 61 runs
22nd February: Lost to Sri Lanka by six wickets

Asia Cup

26th February: Lost to India by six wickets
1st March: Lost to Afghanistan by 32 runs
4th March: Lost to Pakistan by three wickets
6th March: Lost to Sri Lanka by three wickets

ICC WT20 2014

16th March: Beat Afghanistan by nine wickets
18th March: Beat Nepal by eight wickets
20th March: Lost to Hong Kong by two wickets

25th March: Lost to West Indies by 73 runs
28th March: Lost to India by eight wickets
30th March: Lost to Pakistan by 50 runs
1st April: Lost to Australia by seven wickets

Bangladesh v India

15th June: Lost to India by seven wickets
17th June: Lost to India by 47 runs
19th June: Match abandoned v India

West Indies v Bangladesh

20th August: Lost to West Indies by 3 wickets

Not so long ago, Bangladesh whitewashed New Zealand, after that, this year Bangladesh played Sri Lanka at home and like any other Bangladeshi, I was expecting wins from Bangladesh team but what happened? Bangladesh dominated two of those three matches and ‘almost’ won them.

Bangladesh took eight Sri Lankan wickets for less than 70 runs in a match, but still Sri Lanka managed to score over 150 runs and although Bangladesh scored 120 runs losing two wickets in that match, they still failed to chase the target.

The last 11 consecutive loses could have turned out to be nine glorious victories.

Bangladesh almost won nine of those 11 matches but still they couldn’t apply the finishing touch. The only match in these 11 in which Bangladesh played badly is their match against India in the Asia Cup.

Bangladesh also lost in an ODI against Afghanistan but because of Ziaur Rahman they could have won that match also.

When this series started, I thought what is gone is finished, and Bangladesh will at least get some wins in the ODIs against West Indies although I know the conditions in the West Indies are very different from Bangladesh.

But after this match, I ended up shouting "What’s going on?" again.

What’s the problem? Why is it that after batting properly Bangladesh can’t succeed? Why after demolishing their opponent’s top-order batting line-up is Bangladesh still failing?

It’s hard to find the reason, but my personal belief is that after taking cheap wickets, the Bangladeshi bowlers become overconfident.

And in the same way when they almost win the match chasing, their batsman become overconfident and start throwing wickets away.

Anamul Haque is undoubtedly the unluckiest man in this team. He scored a decent century in this innings. He played the anchor role and scored a slow but vital century.

Yet still he couldn’t celebrate as his team lost again. In the Asia Cup he also scored a century against Pakistan and Bangladesh made a huge total. Then, Shahid Afridi demolished the Bangladeshi bowlers and still Bangladesh had to return home with another lose.

What can we say about it? Anamul Haque has made there good centuries in his 20 ODIs but in two of those matches where he scored a hundred, Bangladesh lost the match after dominating. It’s nothing but bad luck.

So, all Bangladeshis are praying that their favorite Bangladesh team will break the chain of bad luck by beating the West Indies later today (22nd August).

But only time will give us the answer!

© Cricket World 2014

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