Two senior players’ off-form clearly affected team: Taskin Ahmed

Bangladesh vice-captain Taskin Ahmed is seen at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka, after the Bangladesh team's arrival on 24 June 2024.Shamsul Hoque

Bangladesh vice-captain Taskin Ahmed said the out-of-form of two senior players clearly had an effect on the team but not off the field.

“We had been together for 47 days, as well as in a good term off the field. It is normal for a team to face problems when its senior players are out of form. Still, we hope we will overcome it soon,” he said replying to queries on the off-form of experienced players Shakib AL Hasan and Mahmuhdullah during the ICC T20 World Cup.

Taskin Ahmed was speaking to reporters at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka, after the Bangladesh team's arrival on Friday morning. His briefing, however, dominated the team performance as well as the match against Afghanistan where Bangladesh conceded an 8-run defeat.

He said, “When the first round of the tournament took place in the US, wickets were less favourable for batsmen. If you look at the statistics you would see experienced batsmen of other countries also performed poorly there and bowlers had extra advantages. We had played on several good wickets in West Indies.”

The Bangladesh vice-captain, however, seemed to be disappointed in the batters. “I have been playing in the Bangladesh team for 10 years and never saw a bad patch for such a long time. We hope we will overcome it,” he said.

Replying to a query on team performance, Taskin Ahmed spoke about their Super Eight match against Afghanistan. He said, “In fact, there is no limit to goodness and it could have been better. We all were disappointed in our last match. We tried to win the match within 12 overs, but when we understood it was not possible to end the innings within 12 overs everyone then tried to play normally. Yet, we could not win the match.”

However, there were positive sides. Bowling was quite good throughout the tournament and Bangladesh reached the Super Eight stage. “For the first time, we have three victories in a T20 World Cup and this is a positive sign, but the negative signs are slightly more. Like everyone, we know we could perform as much as our expectation.”

Regarding the bowling performance, Taskin Ahmed said the Bangladesh bowling unit has been performing better throughout the past couple of years and they are maintaining it. “Bowling will be far better in the coming days,” he said.

Bangladesh’s Rishad Hossain and Tanzim Hasan Sakib were among the leading wicket-takers in the tournament.

“Rishad and Tanzim were among the top-five wicket-takers, which is very positive that star bowlers are coming from Bangladesh in future, and we let the world know that we have the capacity,” he said.

Taskin, however, is hopeful about overall improvement in T20 cricket. “It has been improving slowly. We have been far behind in the T20s. We already have minus points and we are trying our best to gain the plus points and will continue to do so. You become frustrated and it is normal, but we will gift you a god viceroy again, so, keep faith in us.”

Among other players, Shakib-Al-Hasan returned home on Thursday while Liton Das and Soumya Sarkar will arrive on Saturday. Besides, the coaching staff went on leave from Dubai.