The lack of preparation ahead of the crucial tour of New Zealand has remained one of the biggest concerns for most of the players but Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza emphasised on the mental aspect to get the best outcome in testing conditions.
“If you talk about preparation comparing to the previous time we came here, it’s not the same this time. But I think the mental preparation is very important rather than just the skill which I think does not matter much. If we need to beat them I think it’s very important for us to be mentally strong. The environment in the dressing room is very good and if we can start well, it will be a good match,” Mashrafe said at the McLean Park today.
The Tigers will be eyeing their first ever international win against the Kiwis in New Zealand when they take on the hosts in the first of the three-match ODI series at the McLean Park in Napier tomorrow. The cricketers spent time at the nets in their first training session and according to the Tigers skipper it’s important to keep the process right as the mindset has changed drastically since the narrow three-wicket defeat in the 2015 World up in Hamilton.
“Obviously last time when we came here, our expectations were the same. However we may not have had the same mindset from long time back when we used to come here. But since the 2015 World Cup game, followed by the 2017 series, we had a different mindset but unfortunately despite getting opportunities we were unable to utilise that. So obviously we will be looking to utilise the opportunity but for that we have play much better cricket,” he said.
Loss of Shakib Al Hasan to injury has been a big blow for the visitors but Mashrafe reminded that they did reach the final of the Asia Cup without the ace all-rounder and at the same time it’s a great opportunity for others to utilise the opening, whoever replaces the champion all-rounder.
“Obviously it is not a good news for Bangladesh cricket to miss out Shakib but its a great opportunity for all of us to see what we can do without him. However we have played without Shakib in the Asia Cup. At the same time we may not get our best players in the coming series due to injury and other issues so it’s also an experience for us.
“Those who will get the opportunities in place of Shakib can cash in so these things are important before the World Cup to organise as a team. If you keep aside the negatives, there is also a lot to gain if we remain positive,” Masharfe concluded.