Shakib’s experience and leadership is priceless: Donald

Shakib Al Hasan became a left-arm leg-spinner for a brief moment during the second day of the Chattogram Test against Sri Lanka on 16 May, 2022AFP

Bangladesh pace bowling coach Allan Donald has praised all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan for his sheer brilliance with the ball on the third day of the second Test between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Mirpur, Dhaka on Wednesday, reports BSS.

At the end of the day's play, Donald, representing the team at the press conference, said, “What would you teach a player like Shakib? Like Shane Warne, he is very experienced. He has played in all conditions. He always lands them (the whole team) on a string. He always puts the ball in the right place.”

He said Shakib is a smart operator who knows how to deal with the situation. And therefore Donald is hoping to gain a lead despite Sri Lanka putting them in an advantageous position by reaching 282-5 on day three of the Test. As Bangladesh were bowled out for 365, the visitors were just trailing by 83 runs.

The South African legend said, "He is a very clever cricketer. He changes the pace of the ball very swiftly. Today he has done what he is known for. Hopefully, he will take five wickets tomorrow. It's great to have someone like him in the team. His experience and leadership qualities are invaluable.”

Bangladesh pace bowling coach Allan Donald
Shamsul Haque

Donald, regarding Shakib further said, "I know him and Herath have been quite close whenever they need a chat or two. It is nice to hear Shakib talk about spin bowling in his own world."

He also revealed that once AB de Villiers told him that Shakib is a tougher guy, whom anyone would find to go after while batting.

Terming himself a Shakib-admirer, he further said, "I have been a great admirer of Shakib. When AB says it is tough to get down to Shakib, then it must be tough. He is a smart operator."

Shakib is the one who genuinely raised Bangladesh's hope to wrap up Sri Lanka's first innings cheaply. He dismissed Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne on 80. And then Shakib picked up Dhananjaya de Silva when he started to go after the Bangladeshi bowlers aggressively.

But Sri Lanka's top order batted beautifully to negate Bangladesh's advantage finally.

Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan celebrates after dismissing Sri Lanka's captain Dimuth Karunaratne during the third day of the second Test cricket match between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka on 25 May, 2022

"He changes his pace really subtly. He showed again, chipped away. Hopefully he walks away with a five wicket haul tomorrow. It is awesome to have him in the team. His experience and leadership is priceless," Donald concluded.