Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza said on Wednesday that they will launch their ICC Champions Trophy campaign against hosts England with an aim to showcase their skills in the global event.
“This ICC Champions Trophy is an opportunity for us to show our skills to the world and also an opportunity to show the world that we can play good cricket away from home,” Mashrafe said during a long pre-match press conference on the eve of the tournament.
“There are a lot of expectations [from fans], but we also have some hopes. Everybody keeps an eye on this kind of tournament and you can show your ability here,” he continued.
Considering the current form of the England team, the Bangladesh skipper did not hesitate to say that the hosts are the favourites in the tournament opener at the Oval on Thursday. Mashrafe was also not ready to focus on their wins against England in the two global events – the 2011 World Cup and the 2015 World Cup.
“That [the success] happened long ago. We have improved a lot as a team [since then]. But England are favourites. If you consider form and conditions then England are ahead,” said the 33-year-old skipper.
Mashrafe, however, said that the Tigers could feel proud to be playing in the Champions Trophy. “Many people didn’t think that we could play in the Champions Trophy. We can feel proud with the brand of cricket we have been playing for the last few years.”