Bangladesh slumped to their fourth-largest innings defeat in Tests yesterday. While a loss of this magnitude was not considered anything out of the ordinary in the past, the thumping defeat in the face of the hosts' impressive progress in the last two years makes this seem like an anomaly.
The flow-stopping loss was described as 'alarming' by Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim yesterday, who is desperately in search of a way to revive his side's confidence ahead of the second Test in Chittagong.
“Even if there's a collapse it could have happened in one innings, but that it happened in both is an alarming sign. These batsmen have also played against better bowling attacks,” said Mushfiqur at the post-match press conference.
Mushfiqur was especially disappointed with the way his batsmen threw their wickets away. “Batsmen can obviously get out. But the way we got out was disappointing and that needs correction,” he said.
“I don't think the batsmen were ready to fight. We tried to stay motivated, but unfortunately our batsmen were disappointing. On a wicket like this, if you don't commit any mistakes then it's quite difficult to get out,” he added.
Speaking on the manner in which Tamim Iqbal threw his wicket away towards the end of Day Three, the captain stated the need for his batters to 'read situations' appropriately.
“Everyone should play their natural game, but there are situations that we need to read as well. We had eight overs that day and we needed to survive. It's not that he (Tamim Iqbal) did not know that. I think in such situations we should think deeply. He is one of our best batsmen and we need him to stay at the crease for as long as possible because that gives us confidence,” said Mushfiqur.
Short deliveries accounted for a large number of Bangladesh's batsmen. Mushfiqur blamed his batsmen's uneasiness against bouncers to improper application.
“It's quite obvious that at this level everyone will bowl this way. There were problems in our application. You can play pull shots, but they need to be within your control. The wicket became easier to bat on after five to six overs, we just needed to wait,” said Mushfiqur.
Having succumbed to the worst defeat of his captaincy, all Mushfiqur can do now is look for a better outing in Chittagong.
“We made the game difficult for ourselves. It was a sporting wicket just like we wanted. We made many mistakes in one game and that is what led to the big loss. It's difficult to look for a win from here, but we need to revive ourselves and come back strongly.”