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Papon struggles to explain Bangladesh's World Cup failures

UNB . Dhaka
03 Jul 2024 10:06:55 | Update: 03 Jul 2024 11:11:29
Papon struggles to explain Bangladesh's World Cup failures
— Courtesy Photo

Following Bangladesh's disappointing T20 World Cup campaign, Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) President Nazmul Hasan met the media, struggling to explain the national team's failures. Initially saying the board was pleased with reaching the second round, he later admitted uncertainty about the team's poor performance.

His contradictory remarks underscored the board's own struggles to pinpoint the issues hindering the team and chart a path forward for Bangladesh cricket.

Bangladesh won three of seven matches, one against Sri Lanka and two against associate nations—Netherlands and Nepal. Despite a favourable chance to secure a semi-final spot with a win over Afghanistan, their failure sparked widespread criticism and questions about the team's direction.

In a chaotic press conference, Nazmul's statements wavered between defending and expressing disappointment in the team.

“The wickets against Australia and India were vastly different from those in New York and St Vincent. It's tough to win against them on such pitches,” he offered, attempting to rationalise the team's poor showing.

“When we needed to defend, I saw them trying to hit. When we needed to hit, I saw them defending,” he remarked, criticising the team's lack of strategy and execution.

Against Afghanistan, Bangladesh needed 116 runs in 12.1 overs to qualify for the semi-finals with a better run rate than Afghanistan and Australia. The team fell short. Captain Nazmul Hossain Shanto later said they abandoned their effort to win within 12.1 overs after losing three quick wickets.

Nazmul's frustration was evident. “This is unacceptable. As long as I watched, it didn't seem like that. They tried while Tawhid Hridoy was there. Mahmudullah (Riyad) and Rishad (Hossain) also got out trying to hit sixes.”

While addressing questions, Nazmul admitted the board had yet to communicate with the players and coaching staff about the team's performance, saying he could have provided more insights had they done so.

Nazmul also addressed the harsh criticism of the players, often devolving into personal attacks, vowing that the board would not tolerate such behaviour in the future.

“You want to ask questions, I won't stop you, and I won't ever not answer. Whether it's right or wrong, I've always told you what I think,” he affirmed. However, he stressed the need for boundaries, particularly when criticism becomes personal.