Bangladesh's dismal display in the recent World Twenty20 at home has led to the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) hiring an expert who will work with the national team as a 'psychological skill development coach'.
Ali Khan, a Bangladeshi Canadian, who currently works as a tennis coach in Canada, will join the national team for three days. Khan, who was approved by the board on Friday, will have group sessions with the national team on April 24 and 27. He will then speak to the players individually on April 28.
The BCB's project however seems to be in its initial stages as Khan --who is currently in Dhaka on leave -- is yet to sign a long-term contract with the board.
The national team's performances at home so far this year -- including the World Twenty20, the Asia Cup and the series against Sri Lanka -- was well below par and the players openly admitted their failing battles against pressure.
Some of the most obvious instances which showed that the players lacked confidence include Mushfiqur Rahim's statement in a press conference before the Asia Cup that he reckoned that Bangladesh, in the form they were in, could go down even to Afghanistan, which they duly did.
Even the usually fearless Shakib Al Hasan, in a recent interview described clearly how pressurised the players were with the weight of expectations.
Apart from approving a coach to help the players with their confidence levels, the board also received the post-world cup reports regarding the drop in the team's performance levels.
“I have received the coach's report. I also got the medical team's report, but I am yet to see the report from cricket operations. I have read both the reports but I don't want to reveal anything without having discussions in the board,” said BCB president Nazmul Hassan Papon yesterday.
When asked if there was a possibility of the board to hiring a new coach, Papon denied saying that the board 'had not thought of anything like that'. He however, stated that they were in the hunt for specialised coaches.
“We have already talked about hiring specialised spin and batting coaches. We are in the hunt,” said Papon.