Tamim Iqbal, the Bangladesh opener, said that his role in the one-day international team is to bat for as long as possible and construct the innings.
Tamim is one of Bangladesh's most experienced batsmen, and their leading run-scorer in ODIs since 2017. Overall, he has scored 6540 runs in 190 ODIs, at an average of 36.33, and is often heavily relied on to play an anchoring role.
"Can't I play more shots if I want? Don't I want to be adventurous too? But the thing is, we play for the team. There is nothing bigger than the team,'' Tamim told Cricbuzz. "Say, I played with 150 strike-rate but the team lost. What's the point then? But I played with 60 strike-rate but the team won, I am happy. The team wants me to bat deep when I am in. I can understand that and I am comfortable with that role.”
Tamim credited former national team head coach Jamie Siddons with improving his batting. The 30-year-old said that he was initially struggling to get going in Bangladesh's opening game of the Ireland tri-nation series, against West Indies, on Tuesday, 7 May. But he recalled Siddons' words, which gave him the strength to push on. As a result, after scoring just six runs off his first 30 balls, he hit back-to-back fours against Kemar Roach in the 10th over, before going on to notch up his 45th ODI half-century and share a 144-run opening stand with Soumya Sarkar.
"The good thing about my innings was that after struggling, one can come out and play a rash shot and say probably it was not my day. But going through the struggle and surviving was difficult. In the end, you will have an impact on the outcome of the game.
If you see my records of the past few years, the way I am playing has helped the team. This is more effective.
"I learnt this lesson from Jamie Siddons as he always used to say, 'when you are struggling, you only have two options: either you can return to the dressing room and sit with us, or you can fight it out in the middle.'"
Bangladesh will play West Indies again on Monday, 13 May. They are leading the table with six points in their kitty. After the tri-series, they will play two warm-up games before beginning their ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2019 campaign on 2 June against South Africa at the Oval.