Bangladeshi batsmen came up literally trembling against the Indian pacers, while they looked double minded against the spinners, prompting the question whether they have enough mental strength to deal with the adversities specially in away from the home comfort.
India’s ascendency to the no.1 team in test rankings was no fluke. While they have of late a force in overseas condition, in home condition, they are invincible. Since the start of 2013 India have won 26 Test matches out the 33 games they played so far at home while the rest ended in draw.
They have won every Test in their 2019-21 World Test Championship cycle so far, and have 240 points from two series while the way they have dismantled South Africa in the most ruthless manner imaginable, it was expected that they would come hard against the visitors.
The ‘Men in Blue’ did not alter their plan as far keeping their aggression is concerned that helped them bundle out the host just after the tea session for 150 runs. They indeed did same to Bangladesh, what they did to South Africa. But the difference is while Indian bowlers earned South African wickets, Bangladesh almost threw their wickets.
Their discomfort against express pace and lack of application proved that despite crossing 20 years in Test cricket they are yet to earn the adulthood.
It was evident that batsman with proper skill set and more precisely mind-set had the chance to battle out in the middle as some of the batsmen from Tigers camp did show their stubbornness but none could translate their start as they did not have the right frame of mind to construct their innings.
Both the openers Imrul Kayes and Shadman looked out of sort against new ball bowlers Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav who were on their throat. But instead of showing patience at least for one hour, they poked tentatively every time they got the ball outside of the off stump.
The same case happened to Mahmudullah, the senior batsman. Literally trembling against the pacers, Mahmudullah seemed to be panicked and played poor shots repeatedly and one of that against Ashwin cost his wicket for 15.
Mushfiqur Rahim and Mominul showed the patience and got some luck but at the end, their mistakes cost their wicket.
“I only have to blame myself to throw my wicket,” Mominul later said. “It was a tactical mistake from my part. I know my wicket cost us dearly.”
Bangladesh looked dominating when Mushfiqur and Mominul shared 68-run partnership and their comfort at the wicket only suggested that the pitch had no demons and if you can be strong mentally you can deal with everything. There was no high bounce while there were some fielding lapses as well that includes four missed catches but still the Bangladesh batsmen couldn’t capitalise on it.
The approach of the Bangladeshi batsman can be questioned in more than many ways as most of them have to take certain responsibility as they could have saved their wicket with a more optimistic approach that was never on the cards due to fear factor.
But captain Mominul Haque differed, saying that the fear factor was not there.
“In international level no bowlers nowadays bowl with 120/130 km pace. Everyone operates with 140 km. If we can’t be ready to face such pace, it is our failure. But I don’t think it comes out of fear. We can’t apply ourselves in fact,” he said.