Tamim's drive echoes thru' secluded Mirpur | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, August 26, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 26, 2018

Tamim's drive echoes thru' secluded Mirpur

Tamim Iqbal returned to business a bit earlier than his other teammates after Eid vacation. The Tigers are set to start their preparations for next month's Asia Cup, to be held in the UAE, from August 27 but the prolific left-hander has decided to return early to a Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium that is unusually calm and quiet to fine-tune his batting.

The 29-year-old could have relaxed following his outstanding performances in the recently-concluded ODI and T20I series against the West Indies but for a perfectionist and professional like Tamim, there is always a job in hand, especially as his mantra is: 'outdo yourself'.

At the moment there are no major problems with regards to his batting. Instead he was working to bring back the previous perfection in his drive shot. And the man beside him was none other than his mentor, Mohammad Salahuddin.

"He [Tamim] is simply working on a minor adjustment as he wants to generate more power when he plays drives. It's a shot that Tamim played more commendably early in his career before suddenly losing the force," observed Salahuddin.

"If you saw his straight drive early in his career, then you found it amazing. It was a shot that was Tamim's strength but nowadays that's not the case. His drive through the off-side also looks fragile. My understanding is that there is a lack of power behind it so I brought it to his attention," he added.

However, Tamim is not the type of player to accept anything without first analysing it himself.

"He will not accept anything without analysing it himself and he found this weakness by watching his last few innings. Tamim also analysed [Virat] Kohli's drive from video clips and became convinced of working on the adjustment. This is a quality that has made Tamim a successful batsman," explained Salahuddin.

The opening batsman did not fire in the Test series against the West Indies but he was named the player-of-the-series in the ODIs after hitting his 10th and 11th ODI centuries in the first and third matches, with a fifty in between. His 44-ball 77 in the second T20I was also remarkable and given his exploits, he could easily have chosen to rest on his laurels.

"But Tamim knows there is no end to improving performances and he also knows that one has to do the work with purpose," concluded Salahuddin.

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