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Siddons denies refusing to work with national team

Staff Correspondent
23 May 2023 03:34:05 | Update: 23 May 2023 03:34:42
Siddons denies refusing to work with national team
Jamie Siddons (L) talks to Tamim Iqbal during a practice session in Chattogram on February 27, 2022 — AFP Photo

Jamie Siddons, who served as the Bangladesh Men’s National Cricket Team head coach from 2008 to 2011, returned to Bangladesh in 2021 with the Bangladesh Cricket Board aiming at using the Australian for the development of younger batters.

However, that did not materialise for a long time as the Tigers did not have a batting coach appointed, thus leading to Siddons filling in for that.

After more than two years, though, Siddons has finally gotten into his work with developing the future batters of the national team, something he was initially brought in for.

As part of that, Siddons is currently in Sylhet, working with the Bangladesh A side, who are currently playing a three-match four-day series against West Indies A.

Although there have been talks that the Australian was unwilling to work with the national team as he was brought in for the developmental side of BCB, Siddons refused that statement.

“Let’s get the facts right. I didn’t say I don’t want to work with the national team. I love working with the national team. I don’t care where I work,” he told the media in Sylhet.

The former Bangladesh head coach pointed it out that the batters he was working on are the next in line for the Tigers.

“I can make batsmen better, just underneath the national team is where they need some help. This group of players will be the next ones in the national team. I want to make sure they don’t have major deficiencies before they get selected. To make sure they aren’t easy to bowl to when they are at the international level,” he said.

In the first four-day match against the Caribbeans, the Bangladesh batters failed to put up a good showing as they barely held on to eke out a draw. In the first innings, Bangladesh were bowled out for 264 before seeing out the day with 187-7 in the second.

Siddons believes that such an incident happened because all the batters came into the series after playing white-ball cricket in the recently-concluded Dhaka Premier League.

“I think it looked to me like a lot of players coming together after playing a lot of white-ball cricket. Maybe too many shots. Pace bowlers made them play a lot of forward defence, which is a key to red-ball cricket. Batters played too many shots too early in their innings. Not leaving or defending enough balls. We will make that adjustment in this game hopefully,” he said.

The Australian also explained what he wanted, “If we can defend better and be a little more patient. I want to see the batters bat for six hours. I don’t want to see quickfire thirties and flashy twenties. We want to see batters knock the bails off at the end of the day and be ready to bat the next day.”