Series defeat to AFG makes us alert for Asia Cup, World Cup: Mehidy Hasan

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Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran added 256 runs for the opening wicket
Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran added 256 runs for the opening wicket © AFP

Bangladesh all-rounder Mehidy Hasan said on Saturday that 331 was a bit too much for them to chase against Afghanistan in the second game of the three-match series.

Afghanistan gave Bangladesh a reality check in a format they're meant to be the most comfortable playing by clinching the three-match series with one game still to play. Afghanistan posted a colossal total of 331 for 9 after they were sent in to bat first on the back of twin hundreds from Rahmanullah Gurbaz (145) and Ibrahim Zadran (100) and later bowled Bangladesh out for 189 in 43.2 overs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.

"331 runs was a bit too much. We couldn't bowl in an organised manner at the beginning and couldn't attack," Mehidy said of his team's defeat. "On the other hand they succeeded with their attack. If our top-order did well or we have good partnerships at the top and took the game deep, we would have hope," he added.

"Since that didn't happen the match became difficult for us. We gave away 30 to 40 runs in excess. It would have been different had we kept them to 280 or 290," he said.

Mehidy also reckoned Bangladesh didn't become a bad ODI side overnight because of this series defeat.

"I had told at a press conference before that if we played this series badly, it wouldn't mean we have become a bad side. Our record is very good and we qualified for the World Cup. Our team combinations are good and the players are in good touch. Overall we are confident

"The lacking that we had in these two matches and the mistakes we made will allow us to become more alert since we have big series ahead of us. We have Asia Cup and World Cup games against them and I hope we would be able to overcome our errors," he said.

"One thing that was good is that we have an opportunity now. Losing this series meant we can work on where we lacked and where we need to improve. Since we have World Cup and Asia Cup games against them, we can plan our batters' gameplan, which bowlers we can target or how we can stop their batters. Since we have three months before World Cup and one-and-a-half month before Asia Cup, every cricketer can plan individually. Since we have time, it would be good," he concluded.

Bangladesh will take on Afghanistan in the series concluding game at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium on July 11 before both teams move to Sylhet to play two-match T20I series.




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