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Playing five bowlers in Test is best option: Herath

  • Sports Correspondent
  • 16 May, 2022 12:00 AM
  • Print news

Bangladesh spin bowling coach Rangana Herath said on Sunday that playing five bowlers is the best option in a Test match.

The host last played with a five-man bowling unit during their tour of Sri Lanka in 2021 as team management was convinced that it was the best way to go forward during the series opener in Pallekelle which is known to produce flat batting wickets.

Since the Bangladesh tour of Sri Lanka, the host seven Tests respectively against Zimbabwe, Pakistan, West Indies and South Africa with four bowlers in the playing XI before returning to a five-bowler formula that is known to be ideal for any Test team.

The decision certainly looked to benefit them considering their bowling unit looked much fresher as the bowlers could be rotated once they looked to have gone out of gas.

“I always believe that if we have five bowlers in a Test, it will help us take 20 wickets,” Bangladesh spin coach Rangana Herath told the reporters after the end of the opening day’s play. “With or without the heat it makes life easier for the bowlers. It gives a bit of rest for the others,” he said, adding that he had full confidence that Shakib won’t take time to get back his rhythm despite playing the game with minimal practice due to his experience.

“I was 100 percent confident that he will deliver even without practice,” he said.

“We don’t get too many players of caliber even without practicing; he was on his mark with his first ball. It is very good for his confidence,” he said.

“He (Shakib) bowled very well today. He was the most economical bowler. Shakib gives us balance when he is around. Otherwise, we need to find someone who can bat and bowl,” he added. Herath added that he is impressed with the performance of the opening day but added that they need to make sure that they bowled out their opponent inside 400 runs considering they will face some stiff challenges from the opponents’ camp.

“Especially on the first day of a Test match, I am happy with how the bowlers did. Shakib and Taijul bowled well. Nayeem also took two wickets. He hasn’t played much cricket in the last 18 months but he has been practicing a lot. In that case, I saw that he needed a bit of confidence but when he got that wicket off the first ball, his confidence (was restored),” said Herath.

“They are 258-4 so I am sure we need two quick wickets as soon as possible tomorrow morning. We want to keep them under 400 runs, so we have to get them bowled out for another 120-130 runs,” he said.

“They have good spinners like Embuldaniya, Mendis and Dhananjaya de Silva, which gives them a quality spin attack. It will be a good challenge for us tomorrow and the day after,” he concluded.