'Taskin's exclusion not the end of the world' | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 23, 2016 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:34 AM, March 23, 2016

ICC World T20

'Taskin's exclusion not the end of the world'

What is the difference between Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza and his deputy Shakib Al Hasan? Love it or loathe it, Shakib is a bit pragmatic, outspoken, devoid of emotion and less diplomatic, and like someone who could not care less.

If you want to have the first glimpse of that, ask him if he was as emotionally distressed as the other members of the team -- including Mashrafe -- over the loss of Taskin Ahmed and Arafat Sunny, and he will tell you: “I can't read others' minds. But from my point of view I was not.

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"Obviously he was bowling well for us for the past six months or so. Yes, he was an important part of the team but it's not that everything is at an end because he can't play for the next few games or so. I believe we have a team that can play well in tomorrow's game," he responded with a squinting smile on his face.

The ace Bangladesh all-rounder will also tell you that 'inspiring the team as a senior player and vice-captain' has a different meaning to him.

"We are all grown-up people here. We all are mature. I don't think there is anything to inspire them. The biggest inspiration is that you are playing for your country. If you get the opportunity to get to the ground, you get the opportunity to serve your country,” added Shakib.

When asked if Mahmudullah Riyad should bat up the order or whether he felt he himself should bat at number three so that he could contribute to the team more, Shakib played a straight-batted shot.

"If I'm given an option, I will bat at number three. I have done well in that position. I don't mind batting at any number for the cause of the team. I think he [Riyad] batted at number five in a few games. It depends on the situation and the team combination. I think what is required from that player on that day is more important. This is how we are approaching things at the moment."

He was also critical about the lapses in the field against Australia.

"Fielding is very important in a T20 game. We will have to take all the catches and save runs. We could not do it yesterday [Monday]. It was disappointing because we have some young and outstanding fielders. Hopefully, we will not repeat the mistakes we made yesterday. However, I don't want to make that an excuse for the loss," he said.

A member of the new breed that knows no fear, Shakib said that that attitude augured well for Bangladesh.

“[Our] Mindset has certainly changed a lot in the last three to four years. Now we know how we can win games, we have more contributors in our side. Previously it was two or three guys and now there are four or five guys who contribute regularly. So, a big change has happened. Obviously we were playing at home [during their recent successes such as the Asia Cup runners-up finish] and that confidence gave us a chance to show that we can do well in different conditions," said Shakib, adding that the Chinnaswamy wicket was very good to bat on and the toss might play a vital role.

He said that his team needed to exploit the first six overs, which was something they failed to do in the first two games, but refuted claims that they committed a lot of big mistakes which cost them dearly against Australia.

“It might be misleading a statement if we say that we have committed big mistakes. We have made some small mistakes and if we correct those we can be a more improved team tomorrow. I think our overall bowling was good although we made some mistakes while fielding."

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