Congratulation Tigers!



Bangladeshis have very rare occasion of celebrating national victories. But we had one yesterday which people irrespective of political belief, cast and creed celebrated. An occasion which brought Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition close together. Our cricketers gave us the moment of joy and glory.

Bengal tigers white washing full strength black caps in ODI  is by any count the greatest sporting achievement of cricket loving sporting nation. The manner in which Saquib influenced tiger cabs hunted Kiwis deserves unqualified praise. Wining four matches in a row and some matches going down to the wire evidence the growing maturity and never say die attitude. The entire team gelled together in great commitment and determination. Tigers have now developed the habit of winning and will definitely act as a team to reckon with in the ensuing World Cup for all its opposition . Bangladesh won 1st, 4th and 5th ODI after keen contest and second was a roller coaster. SaquibulHasan , the top ranked ODI all-rounder amply demonstrated his superiority with both willow and leaher scoring 211 runs with century and a fity and grabbing 11 wickets in four matches. He was man of the series. Two other youngsters SurawardyShuva and RubelHussain won man of the match accolade in two other ODI with Saquib winning the other two .

Kiwis were originally due to play a full series of test matches oDI and twenty twenty in Bangladesh. But BCB thought it wise to turn the series into 5 match ODI with an eye to the ensuing ICC World Cup preparation. Bangladesh preparation got a blow before even the series started as the flamboyant Bangladesh opener TamimIqbals delayed operation in his hands forced him out of the series. Captain and ace strike bowler Mashrafee also got injured in the very first match . We all know another key player Mohammad Ashraful was not in tune. So Bangladesh had to encounter strong Kiwis without three key players . But Saquib just returning from a successful English county stinct and Bangladesh unit after extensive preparation and hard work looked determined from the start.

For Kiwis adjusting to heat and humidity was a great challenge. Moreover rain and inclement weather at the end of the season also restricted their preparation. But a team having world class players like BredenMcCullam, Ross Taylor and Daniel Vittori can afdjust to any condition. Inspired by Saquib all round performance Bangladesh stunned Kiwis in the first ODI by 9 runs. Tigers started dreaming of winning the first ever oDI against a fdull strength major majoropposition . The second ODI was washed out without a ball being bowled. Bangladesh did not allow Kiwis to regroup in the third ODI and had a roller coaster 7 wickets victory when Young Suharawardy Shuvo bowled exceedingly well . Fourth ODI was Saquibs solo and the 5th was a nail bitter.

No one expected in the wildest of drteams that Bangladesh will succesfuly defend a moderate target of 174 in the last ODI.But the changed Tigers were not willing to loose. In the first few overs they broke the backbone of Kwi batting grabbing 5 wickets forcing them to perspire for life. Vittori and Elliot were giving them life saving drugs and lamost pulled them out of danger zone. But determined tigers bowling and fielding like champions hit them back in time. When young Rubel knocked out Mills leg stump in the third ball of the last over Kiwis were only 4 runs away from target. Rubel got 4 wickets. Bangladesh erupted with tears of joy.

In the history of Bangladesh cricket the just concluded oDI series victory will remain as a significant milestone and future inspiration. Well dione Bangladesh. Tiger cabs are really maturing. In the past there were isolated victories. But now the team has grown in confidence and does not throw the towel.

With series against Zoimababwe in December and World Cup next year Bangladesh need to further iron its efforts. Batting will be definitely bolstered with the return of TamimIqubal. Middlre order batting still remains in a spot of bother. We will love to see a rejuvenated Ashraful back into action soon. Junaid and Roquibul did not bat well in the series. ShariarNafees is getting back his tune. He can bat at number three when Tamim gets back and opens with ImrulKayes> Bangladesh needs some late order stroke maker to make best use of batting p[ower play. Return of fully fit Mashrafee will be useful. Bangladesh also needs to improve bowling at the batting power play in death overs. Much improved Rubel and Shafiul give hope . India and South Africa are in Bangladesh Group in ICC Woreld Cup. Bangladesh beat both in 1997 World Cup. We must make specific plans against both.

The Tiger White Washing Black Caps will make Bangladeshis around the world start dreaming for greater glories. Tigers must gear up to match that.

Congratulations tigers – a job well done.

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