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Bangladesh's batting woes a 'reality check' ahead of World Cup: Shakib

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Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan expressed concern over his team's below-par performance in the batting department in recent months.

Since the start of this year, Bangladesh have so far played 16 ODIs: Won 7; Lost 7; No Result 2. They lost a three-match home series to England by a 2-1 margin, won both home and away series against Ireland 2-0 respectively, and lost to Afghanistan at home 2-1 in July. 

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In the ongoing Asia Cup, they have tasted defeat in three out of their four encounters so far – twice against Sri Lanka and once against Pakistan – and in all three losses, they were bowled out by the opposition. Only once did they manage to cross the 300 mark, in the win against Afghanistan where they posted a strong 334/5 thanks to twin centuries from Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Najmul Hossain Shanto. 

In Saturday's Super Four game against Sri Lanka at the Asia Cup, chasing 258, Bangladesh were bundled out for 236. None of their batters managed to cross 30 apart from youngster Towhid Hridoy, who made a fighting 82. 

"Our batting is going downwards for the last six months (in ODIs) since the series against England and later Afghanistan, now in this tournament and we need to work on it," Shakib said after last night's loss against Sri Lanka.

"We are concerned with our batting and we need to see those areas and work on it so that we can rectify those areas. This tournament before the World Cup will be hugely beneficial because we need to have a reality check," he added. 

Shakib also shed light on Bangladesh's ODI performance, emphasizing their strength in bilateral assignments while acknowledging the need for improvement in big tournaments.

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"We always play well in bilateral series and you cannot say we are a bad team but our big test is taken in this kind of tournament where we don't perform extraordinarily.

Reflecting on Bangladesh's past World Cup performances, in which they have won three games in each edition since 2011, he continued, "We won three matches in 2007, 2011, 2015, and 2019 World Cup so people can say a lot of things but when we have a reality check usually we fail. It is good that the tournament [Asia Cup] was played before the World Cup and everyone will think how we can solve this problem and only after that can we do better.

"We don't have history because we have not succeeded (in big tournaments) though we played two or three finals in Asia Cup and if we could win it would have been better but we are always a promising side."

Bangladesh will kick off their World Cup campaign against Afghanistan on 7 October at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala. 


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