• Tuesday, Oct 04, 2022
  • Last Update : 10:24 am

Shakib to return at top-order

  • Published at 03:19 pm May 21st, 2021
Shakib al Hasan listens as Bangladesh head coach Russell Domingo makes a point during training in Mirpur Friday BCB

 Tamim confirmed Shakib’s No 3 batting position in the press conference, and also warned not to expect excessively from Shakib in every innings, considering his superlative form in the 2019 World Cup

Ace Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib al Hasan will return to the No 3 position at the batting order in the upcoming home series against Sri Lanka, ODI captain Tamim Iqbal confirmed this to the media Friday.

Shakib was promoted to No 3 in 2017 and he scored plenty of runs at the top-order.

Shakib scored 1,177 runs at No 3 position in 23 innings with an average of 58.85 and strike rate of 88.76, and hammered two hundreds and 11 fifties.

Shakib had a superb World Cup 2019 in the United Kingdom as the left-hander scored 606 runs at No 3 from just eight games.

Upon his return to international cricket in 2021 after serving a one-year ban, Shakib batted at No 4 against the West Indies where he scored 19, 51 and 43 not out in three matches.

Bangladesh tried a few other left-handers in the form of Nazmul Hossain Shanto and Soumya Sarkar at No 3, but none were able to live upto Shakib’s performance recently at the top-order.

Also Read: Shanto needs break from ODIs, says Tamim

As a result, the team management opted for Shakib for the No 3 position again in the upcoming series against Sri Lanka, and it looks like Shakib will bat in that position in near future also.

ODI skipper Tamim confirmed Shakib’s batting position in the press conference, and also warned not to expect excessively from Shakib in every innings, considering his superlative form in the 2019 World Cup.

"Shakib will bat at No 3. There will be expectations from him at No 3, that’s quite natural. But we have to understand that, Shakib’s performance with the bat at the 2019 World Cup was exceptional. It is quite impossible to perform like that in every match. Scoring 600-plus runs in eight games in a World Cup, that’s kind of rare.  Anyways, I'm pretty sure he'll perform at No 3 position, as he has scored plenty of runs at the top-order in recent years," said Tamim.

Sri Lanka have sent a young squad for the three-ODI series against hosts Bangladesh, with a new captain in Kusal Perera.

These three games are important for both the sides as this series is part of the ODI Super League.

Bangladesh are expecting a tough fight from their counterparts in the coming matches, said Tamim.

Also Read: Tamim backs Mushfiq as wicket-keeper in ODIs

“Experience might be a factor in international cricket but it's more important how you perform in the middle and how you execute your plans. Although this Sri Lankan side have a young squad, they are very much competitive. We have to play good, quality cricket to beat them in the ODI series,” Tamim explained.

The Bangladesh captain is also expecting his bowling unit to fire against the Lankans in the ODI series. 

Having Shakib back in the attack and the good form of Taskin Ahmed, Mustafizur Rahman and Mehedi Hasan Miraz  is giving Bangladesh the edge for the upcoming series.

“Bowling is always important to win matches. Your bowlers can win you matches even if you manage to score a low total. Similarly you can also lose the match with a big total in the scoreboard if your bowlers do not perform well. So bowling is obviously important for us. It is good for us that Shakib and Mustafizur are back in the attack. Taskin is in good rhythm. And also off-spinner Miraz is currently the fifth bolwer in ODI bowlers' ranking. So hopefully our bowlers will perform well in the series," Tamim concluded.

The first match will be played Sunday in Mirpur’s Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium, while the second and third game will be played Tuesday and Friday at the same venue.

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