Kiwis hope to capitalise on Tigers’ inexperience
The New Zealand and Bangladesh team management sort of stand on the opposite side of the spectrum as they prepare to open their latest World Test Championship cycle through the two-match Test series, beginning with the first game in Sylhet tomorrow.
While Bangladesh's head coach felt it was time to move on from some of the experienced campaigners who have performed for the side over the years in order to begin a new chapter in the country's cricket, the Kiwis are hoping to take advantage of just that.
The Tigers will be without a number of their key players as names like Shakib Al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, and Taskin Ahmed are not available for the series.
According to Luke Ronchi, the Black Caps' head coach for the tour, it indeed has come as a blessing, considering how the Tigers would be missing out on the edge had the experienced bunch been there.
"Definitely, they are experienced and they have played a lot of international cricket and they have been massive for Bangladesh for a long time. To not have them there, from a spectators' point of view is disappointing, but from our point of view when you have to play against them and to not have to do that this time is a nice thing," Ronchi said.
However, despite the fact that the Tigers are missing a number of their regular performers, Ronchi refused to take things lightly against the Najmul Hossain Shanto-led side.
"It's their country and their conditions; they play here really well. So, just have to make sure we challenge them as much as possible and make their batters work hard to score runs while also making their bowlers find it hard to pick wickets. Obviously, with the quality of pace and spin in both sides, it's going to be really hard and that's where the game will sort of change as to how well they can bowl and how each team can play against those attacks," he added.
Even though Bangladesh are known to find a way to trap opponents in their spin web, Ronchi also expects the pitch in Sylhet to offer bounce and carry.
"I think that's the nature of cricket in Bangladesh – there's a lot more spinners involved. But the surface here, we did hear there can be some pace and bounce on it. But also, the sort of surface on which we practiced, we expect a little bit more bounce," he said.