They came, they saw, they conquered!
The world has seen all kinds of winning spree from time to time, but this is going to remain etched in people’s mind for long, if not forever. Bangladesh’s fourth successive series triumph is surely going to change people’s perception of the team forever. Their performance has remained clinical throughout the year and every team that tried to challenge its potential has learned their lesson so far. No more struggling against the short ball, no more getting subdued by one-sided decisions, and certainly no more considering them as the team of underdogs who don’t have what it takes to compete with the big teams.
Four back-to-back series win doesn’t come easily. They first trounced Zimbabwe with 5-0. Then came Pakistan that was whitewashed with 3-0. Still, everyone had their wits in place and held onto their cynicism. The spotlight was then on how the Indian team is going to tackle the pack of a super-charged Bangladesh. Next thing we know, the hashtag ‘Banglawash’ was trending on Twitter.
And, then, there was the South Africa tour
When the protease slammed an easy eight-wicket victory in the first ODI, it seemed that the hatrick has came to an end. But the plot thickened when Bangladesh bundled out the visitors for just 162 runs in 46 overs in the 2nd ODI. The target was easily chased down with seven wickets in hand and 134 balls to spare.
In the third ODI, The South African team was again wrapped up at 166/9 in 40 overs. After rain took over, a revised target of 170 was set using the D/L method. The victory target was easily chased by the opening pair of the Bangla team. Openers Tamim Iqbal (72*) and Soumya Sarkar (90) posted 154 runs and they easily reached 170/1 in 26.1 overs, winning the match by 9 wickets.
How it all started
It all started when Zimbabwe toured the country last November, 2014. Both were test playing nations and the test was basically between two minnows. Zimbabwe was thrashed with a 5-0 in the ODI series, but nobody looked beyond the results. A really exemplary performance in the World Cup 2015 showed their progress in the game, especially the match with England that virtually placed them in the Quarter-Finals. And, then, there was the quarter final match with India that literally brought them into the game. After blaming umpires for biased decisions, they have to bow out from the world cup, but a lesson was learnt and the team returned with a whole new spectrum of motivation.
Pakistan toured the country in the next month and history was made thereafter.
The rising stars of the team
Soumya Sarkar, the man of the moment, has completely changed the outlook people used to have towards Bangladesh batsmen. With the newly reinvented ‘Periscope’ shot that has added a new feather to his cap, Soumya has reflected his natural ability on the field and the changing times of Bangladeshi cricket. Mashrafe Mortaza and Mustafizur Rahman appeared on the radar from time to time to do their bit. And, the most faithful Shakib Al Hassan has always proved his quintessential role.
The Big Picture
A consolidated team now, there is no stopping Bangladesh anymore. Names like Mortaza and Sarkar are surely going to be feared. Considering the current performance status, the future of the team looks far more brighter than anyone has ever predicted The rise of the Bangladesh cricket team is a living example of how consistency and dedication matters more than anything in this gentleman’s game.
With some erratic performances, they have moved on from being minnows to becoming giant slayers. It’s time that we give them due credit for it and start taking them more seriously.