Praise from Shakib Al Hasan gives extra motivation: Taskin

Bangladesh's paceman Taskin Ahmed bowls on day one of the first cricket Test match between New Zealand and Bangladesh at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on 1 January 2022AFP

Bangladesh pacer Taskin Ahmed showed his enthusiasm to take his performance to the next level after being praised by Test captain Shakib Al Hasan, who gave the lanky pacer a credit to bring up a revolution in the country's fast bowling department, reports BSS.

"No doubt he (Shakib) is a legend of this country," Taskin said. "When he showered me with praise, it means a lot to me. It gives me further motivation to take my performance to the next level. Hopefully I will be able to do that."

Despite losing the first Test in West Indies tour by seven wickets, Bangladesh fast bowlers - Ebadot Hossain, Syed Khaled Ahmed and Mustafizur Rahman showed a praiseworthy performance, which made Shakib proud of their ability and standard.

"Taskin should be credited for the rejuvenation of Bangladesh's fast bowling group. In the last two or three years, Taskin has shown how a pace bowler can actually grow or move forward and improve his performance. I think many people will follow him and will be successful," Shakib said of Taskin.

After an epic start to his career in 2014, Taskin lost the way, mostly due to his wayward action and bowling and partly for his knack to be injured more often.

During the Covid-19-forced break in 2020, he followed an intense diet and practice schedule which paid off him tremendously as he turned out to be a super consistent bowler from a bowler with occasional flashes of brilliance.

Taskin missed the Test series in West Indies due to his injury. However he is now ready to be the part of ODI and T20 squad after recovering from his injury.

The speedster will board the West Indies bound flight to join the side with T20I captain Mahmudullah Riyad on Friday.

"I am bowling for the last two days. I'm fine now. They (fitness trainers) are all satisfied, I am also satisfied. I tried to bowl with 100 per cent effort in front of the physio, doctors and other concerned people and it appears to be okay. They all are happy with my progress," he said.

Taskin is about to join the team after about two and a half months and the joy is touching him to a great degree.

Bangladesh's Taskin Ahmed (L) celebrates the wicket of New Zealand's Tim Southee with teammates during the fifth day of the first cricket Test match between New Zealand and Bangladesh at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on 5 January 2022
AFP file photo

"I wish I could contribute in the team's victory in Caribbean Island. I am going to join the team after about two and a half months. It is the happiest thing in my life. The most peaceful thing for a sportsman is to be with the team," he remarked.

Taskin last played for Bangladesh during the South Africa series. In that series Taskin was the magician with the ball in hand. This time the fast bowler wants to show the same charisma in West Indies.

"I hope everything will be okay with me. I am determined to do well by keeping up the same energy and consistency. It is a challenging task but I am keen to take that challenge," he added.