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Domingo considers Shakib as back-up opener

  • Sports Correspondent
  • 1st August, 2021 10:16:22 PM
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Domingo considers Shakib as back-up opener

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Bangladesh head coach Russell Domingo said on Sunday that Shakib Al Hasan could be promoted as an opener in the upcoming T20I series against Australia only if their regular openers missed the matches.
 
The Tigers will be without their regular openers Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das in the five-match T20 series, starting on Tuesday in Dhaka while Soumya Sarkar is still recovering from a strain although he is expected to be available in the series opener.
 
Shakib, who played the majority of his T20I innings at number three and four positions respectively, is yet to open for Bangladesh in any format although he opened for Gemcon Khulna a few times in Bangabandhu T20 Cup last year.
 
“Firstly there is no major injury concern. Soumya Sarkar is recovering from a mild strain that is carrying from Zimbabwe but I am pretty confident that he will be fit,” Domingo told reporters in a virtual press conference.
 
“We got a long batting order. Obviously, Shakib is there, Shakib could move into the opening spot while Mithun (Mohammad) is a middle-order (batsman) who can bat at the top as well,” he added.
 
Both Bangladesh and Australia began their preparation at the Sher-e Bangla National Stadium on Sunday after completing their three-day mandatory room quarantine in the team hotel.
 
Domingo claimed that they are not getting frightened by the presence of Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazelwood as he believed that his charges have the ability to play these fast bowlers.
 
“Mitchell Starc and Hazlewood are quality bowlers and we have looked at some of their footage but at the end of the day, you will play the ball not the man.
 
“End of the day they are humans and will bowl some bad balls. We got to play with mind clear and absolute clarity that we have got to put away the bad balls.
 
“We know that Australia has a rich history of cricket but the history that has been created by the group of Australians is not here at the moment. For us to compete and win the series we have to be at the top of our game.
 
“As a coach, I am confident that if we can do the basics really well we can push Australia and beat them here. I don’t think psychologically it's a massive issue,” he said.
 
“I don’t know how many series Bangladesh have played against Australia before. Speaking to these boys not many of them played a proper series against them.
 
“Look we are coming here wanting to win the series and there is no doubt about it and we are not just coming up just to compete. We want to make sure we give Australia a good go and at the end of the day we are going to try and win the series,” he added.
 
Domingo also didn’t hide his frustration with the way the Australians treated the Mushfiqur Rahim issue as the wicketkeeper-batsman failed to make himself available for the series after missing the 10-day quarantine deadline.
 
“I can’t understand the stringent rules Australia placed on Mushfiq. I think 10 days would have surely been enough. It’s very disappointing the way they went about it,” he said.
 
“But look, we want to play against the best team in the world and it’s an opportunity for other one or two younger players or fringe players to come and play and I am sure they are capable of it. No Mushfiq is surely a loss for us but we have got a big squad and some quality players to replace him,” he added.