Pacers remain untested | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 25, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, February 25, 2019

Pacers remain untested

The preparation for the first of three Tests against New Zealand was a half-baked one for Bangladesh as rain allowed just 12 overs of play on the second day of the two-day practice match against a New Zealand XI at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval in Christchurch yesterday.

It was arguably one of the chilliest days in New Zealand, with rain making life more unbearable yesterday. The Bangladesh squad will travel today to Hamilton, which is expected to be even chillier, for the first of the three-match series starting from February 28 at Seddon Park.

Talking about half-baked preparations, the Bangladesh batsmen did manage to spend some time out in the middle on Saturday's first day, with most batsmen utilising the opportunity to adapt to conditions following their dismal performance in the ODI series.

But the bowlers did not get that opportunity on the second day as rain washed out the entire day after the Tigers bowlers just 12 overs against New Zealand XI.

Mustafizur Rahman and Ebadot Hossain did pick up a wicket each but they could not bowl nearly enough to be prepared for the grind of a five-day match and were deprived of the vital match practice desperately needed for a relatively inexperienced bowling line-up.

When it comes to experience, Mustafizur -- who has played just 12 Tests so far, is actually the most experienced pacer in the squad. Abu Jayed has played three, Khaled Ahmed just one while Ebadot is still waiting for his Test debut.

It will be important for the young Bangladeshi seamers to utilise the seam-friendly New Zealand conditions and, more importantly, they will have to lead the Tigers' charge in order to pick 20 Kiwi wickets if the visitors want to win a Test.

According to Bangladesh bowling coach Courtney Walsh, it will be important that the young seamers remain consistent while at the same time showing controlled aggression.

“It's a very inexperienced attack so there have been discussions among ourselves, [on] what we've learnt and how things are progressing. But to me, it's all about consistency and getting the ball in the right areas. We have been trying to work on that aspect in practice so far and it's coming on well. The one disappointment was that we didn't get a chance to see how they bowl in the second spell, to see how they adjust in such situations.

“We had enough practice but even then we would want to see them in the matches. The boys are very keen and I think they know the conditions, which might not help spin and it's the seamers who will have to put their hands up. So it's a chance for one or two of these young bowlers to try to establish themselves and try to do well for Bangladesh,” Walsh told reporters yesterday.

There was talk about the strong wind gusts in Hamilton and Wellington, which may cause some problems for the seamers, but according to one of the all-time great fast bowlers there was no point looking for excuses and that it is up to the bowlers to try to adjust to the situation.

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