Akram blames ‘battle of words’ for World Cup disaster
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) director Akram Khan feels that the 'battle of words' right before the World Cup was the main reason behind the team's abysmal performance in the showpiece event in India.
"The truth is that many people here are more interested in winning the battle of words. That's why we as a nation didn't perform well," Akram told the media in Mirpur today.
"The players need to go and perform on the field. We couldn't do that. We were busy talking about off the field topics. Everyone needs to realise that," he added.
The Tigers had a disappointing showing in the World Cup in India, losing seven out of their nine matches to finish eighth in the 10-team competition.
The Bangladesh team went through a change in captaincy a little over a month before the World Cup when Tamim Iqbal stepped down and Shakib Al Hasan stepped up as the skipper.
The drama only increased when Tamim got axed from the World Cup squad for being unfit. The opener refuted that claim in a video posted on social media, which was then countered by Shakib in a pre-recorded interview, where he labelled Tamim's action as 'childish'.
The chaos in the buildup evidently didn't help the team's cause in the World Cup.
Without naming anyone in particular, Akram said that clashes between individuals handicapped Bangladesh in the tournament.
"This country belongs to all of us. If Bangladesh do well, all of us will feel happy. But if some people only do things as they wish, then this will not happen.
"I've always noticed that during major tournaments we talk too much about things which aren't related to the game. That puts everyone under pressure.
He was also critical of the experiments made to the squad by the team management in the matches leading up to the World Cup.
"I had said this before, the Asia Cup could've been the ideal tournament for the players who will take part in the World Cup. But we experimented with the team in that tournament and eventually couldn't form a stable unit. I don't think any team can do well after so much experimentation."