Monday 3 November 2008 

Tamim Iqbal Optimistic Ahead Of South Africa Tour

Bangladesh opening batsman Tamim Iqbal believes that coming off the back of strong performances against New Zealand his side can challenge South Africa on home soil.

The tour begins with a Twenty20 International on Wednesday (November 5th) in Johannesburg, the same venue where Bangladesh beat the West Indies by six wickets in the 2007 Twenty20 World Cup.

Last month, Bangladesh beat New Zealand in one of three ODIs and pushed them all the way in the Test series before going down 1-0.

"It was a very close series and we could have won the first Test and missed out on beating New Zealand in the ODI series also after winning the first ODI," Tamim said.

"The performance gave the players a lot of self belief. If we play up to our hundred percent a positive result is possible here also, not just in the T20 but also in the other matches.

"This is a tough tour and I know I have to work very hard to score runs against South Africa," he added. "But I am really looking forward to the T20 match. I love the format, I love the fast pace of it and it sends my pulse racing," he said.

Key to their chances will be their ability to adjust to pitches which are vastly different from the spin-friendly surfaces back home.

"We have travelled around the world and played in different conditions and wickets so it should not be a problem. We just need to adjust quickly," Tamim said.

Bangladesh's only success against South Africa came in the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean when the Tigers won by 67 runs.

© Cricket World 2008

More from Cricket World