Shakib, Tamim, Riyad key to avoid defeat in 2nd Test

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DHAKA : Whether the postponement of the third days play is anything to go by as far as the game resulting in a draw is concerned then the critics would be quite convinced that the probability of New Zealand victory ought to be weighing heavily on the home side despite interruptions.

Fresh from the Basin Reserve defeat which saw Bangladesh losing a test match after scoring almost 600 runs and dominating the better part of four days it would need a Herculean task on the part of the Bangladeshi players to draw the match from here on, as per thoughts of former national opener Ishtiaque Ahmad talking to BSS on Sunday.

He adds on, Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim may have had phenomenal personal performances that led them to pile up such a mammoth total but it was due to some pathetic performances of some of the seniors, especially Tamim Iqbal and particularly Shakib Al Hasan in the second innings that resulted in the shameful and unexpected defeat.

Shakib Al Hasan again finds himself as the leading player in all formats of the game and the number one ranking all rounder in at least one of them. A great pride and honour not only for him but for the entire nation as well. Whether Shakib Al Hasan could be labeled as a truly great player or not is yet another matter.

Having contributions in terms of taking wickets and scoring runs in all formats of the game and in all countries of the world had undoubtedly established beyond doubt the extraordinary talent of the Bangladeshi all rounder but has he really been a regular match winner for Bangladesh?

Going by the dismissals of so many of his innings both in test matches and one dayers would tend to give a sordid picture in that Shakib Al Hasan has actually thrown away many a match either from a probable draw or victory by playing some outrageous shots (the last one was in Wellington Test in the second innings).

The manner of such dismissals has not only deprived his team from more creditable performances but has also deprived him the opportunity of being ranked amongst the greats of all time.

Such is the ability of the player that only Shakib Al Hasan himself will have to wake up and realise his true potentials and pull his socks up as he is not getting any younger and continuing at international level in this form will be a challenge in the coming days.

While still being a senior member of the team he is arguably one of the fittest members of the side as is evidenced during the current series Down Under. Shakib’s importance will once again be felt in the second innings should the weather hold good as the Kiwis bowlers would once again resort to those short pitched bowling that they were so effective within the Test match at Wellington.

Any sniff of a possible victory by the opposition would mean that the Bangladeshi batsmen will have a fight in their hands and senior pro’s like Tamim, Mahmudullah Riyad and Shakib will have to raise their game to another level.

The onus will be on the dynamic and virtuoso performance of Shakib Al Hasan for whom it would yet be another opportunity to redeem him takes it one step further towards greatness.

Perhaps his influence might work like a magic wand among the youngsters who too will have to show special grit to help the seniors to draw this match on a higher note.

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