Najmul: Bangladesh Shows Respect to Zimbabwe, No Room for Complacency

By Real11 - May 2 2024 121 Views

                                                         " W
e are not taking Najmul lightly"- Najmul

Bangladesh captain Najmul Hossain Shanto said they by any means are taking Zimbabwe lightly in the five match T20I series slated to commence in Chattogram on May 3. He also stated that Bangladesh won’t experiment too much in this series as they prepare for the T20 World Cup in the USA and the West Indies. 

This will be Bangladesh’s final T20I series at home before they travel to the USA where they begin their preparation for the showpiece event with a three-match T20I series against the hosts. Meanwhile, Zimbabwe, won’t be seen in the global tournament as they were beaten by Namibia and Uganda and eventually suffered a loss in the Africa leg of qualifiers. 

There are no big or small teams in T20s. As you said, Zimbabwe lost to Uganda. This Zimbabwe beat Sri Lanka recently. If we think like that, there is not much of a difference," said Najmul. "How we are playing the match, the way we are preparing, how we are building our self-confidence... I can say this much that this series will not be that easy. It will be a very competitive series because they are also a very good team.

"First of all, I want to win this series as a captain. This is the first goal. And the preparation will surely be in our minds. It is not as though we will do a lot of experiments for the preparation. We will not need to experiment since all the 15 players here are capable of beating this team. I won't say preparation. I will hope that we can take good preparation in some cases, going into the World Cup," he said.

Najmul added that he is excited to see how Mohammad Saifuddin adapts to international cricket after returning to the mix following a year and a half lay off. “Saifuddin is definitely an important cricketer. He is back after a while. It is a good opportunity for him. The ones who bat in our lower-order, Taskin, Tanzim Sakib, Rishad and even Shoriful, they can all bat. In terms of combination, we are in a good place. If he gets an opportunity in the team, it will definitely be good for the team. If he can give his best, the team will be benefited.  

“Most players will go to the World Cup from the squad that we had in the Sri Lanka series and the squad that we have for this series. If everyone is well. Yes, there might be one or two changes, but most players will go from here. It is difficult to point out three to four points to focus on. I want the focus to be present on all aspects. So that we can go to the World Cup well prepared for every aspect," said Najm.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe skipper Sikandar Raza said the side will be haunted for years to come as they could not qualify for the World Cup. "Funny enough, I knew that question will come," Raza said, when a journalist asked him how hurtful it was for the group to not be playing in the worldwide event. 

"I think that's something that will always be painful. Not just when we play, I think even when we retire and sit down with people that we play cricket with and the people in the management as well because it hurts them equally as well. I think it will always be painful that we're not going to the World Cup. So, it's not just pain that we're feeling now, I think it's something that we're going to have to carry for a long time," he said.

"I always say I don't need motivation to play cricket. Motivation for me comes from within and I speak for my team as well. We have a huge responsibility back home as well for the people and the kids that are playing this sport and the kids who want to make a career out of this sport. So, we have a bigger picture as well. So, I think if there's any other motivation I need from outside, those kids, those families, my country, the future of the sport in the country is enough motivation for me to try and take away the pain and always look forward and make sure we remain steadfast in the goal of growing the game in the country and producing more cricketers and have a legacy of our country.

"There's always great memories we create every time Zimbabwe Cricket as a national team comes together. Always. Yes, sometimes when you lose, you tend to focus on the painful ones. But me, certainly as an individual, I try and look at some of the good memories that I've made, even on the painful tours that I have been on. Because cricket is gonna pass me and my friends very quickly. It's just a phase of life that's gonna go quickly. So, at least when we're sipping on a cup of tea later in our life, we can always talk about those good memories that we have had, that we made while playing cricket. So yeah, we are already making some very good memories and the tour hasn't even started. Which is good," said Raza.

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