Friday, March 12, 2010

Not the way to inherit the earth

When you have spent a long time getting kicked around by everyone around you, the best way to get their attention (and then their respect) is to fight back.  You don't tiptoe up to the bully, gently tap him on the shoulder, and ask to be treated better.  When you do that you get what you deserve - a disdainful look followed by a reminder-thrashing.

The Bangladesh cricket team has been threatening to, of late, break out of its doormat status, propelled by a bunch of players who seem to want more than to just be at the dinner table.  Yesterday their captain, Shakib Al Hasan, had a chance to step forward and throw the gauntlet at Alistair Cook, on debut as England's latest stop-gap captain, when he won the toss in the first Test.

Shakib's team had the better depth in the spin department, a chance at having the visitors bat last on a (potentially) crumbling 5th day pitch, and in Tamim Iqbal a batsman who could expose the Englishman's penchant for getting defensive at the first sign of aggression on a cricket field.  So, what does he do?  He asks England to bat?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Shakib, Shakib, Shakib!  England ended the day at 374 for 3, with Cook still batting on 158.  You got exactly what you deserved.

Having done that you goofed up one more time when tactics mattered.  At 149 for 2 in the 40th over, Kevin Pietersen came in to bat.  Much has been made, of late, by the media about his susceptibility to left-arm spin bowling.  You, Shakib, are probably the best left-arm spinner in the Test world today (Vettori may have something to say about that).  Instead, Pietersen was greeted by Abdur Razzak and Rubel Hossain.  You didn't come on to bowl until Pietersen had gotten over his early jitters and was settling in nicely.  Ay caramba!

Success comes to those who go and seek it.  On a day when you should have been seeking victory, you settled for a safer option.  The more things change about Bangladeshi cricket, the more they stay the same.


Tifosi Guy said...
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Tifosi Guy said...

So tell me again - you actually watched Bang - England ??? I'm more than a bit pissed off with Sky here, because they show Bang - England and also WI - Zim, but NOT NZ - Aus !!!

I love my cricket, but nothing will make me watch Bang - Eng. Two of the most boring teams in the world and when you combine that with the Eng/Bang commentators. Horror combo bar none !