June 2, 2019- The day will be etched as a golden one in the history of Bangladesh cricket. The team, captained by the evergreen Mashrafe Mortaza, rolled over favorites South Africa by 21 runs to announce themselves in the 50-overs mega event. After four drab affairs, the tournament was finally a witness to a closely fought affair at the Kennington Oval in London.
After losing the toss, the Tigers put on 330, their highest ever ODI score, on the board. Mushfiqur Rahim’s 78, Shakib Al Hasan’s 75 and a couple of breezy knocks from Soumya Sarkar and Mahmudullah propelled the Tigers to the mammoth score. Mortaza’s men got themselves in the driver’s seat very early in the second inning and never allowed the Proteas to clinch the ascendancy.
It is very important for our players to stay calm
Bangladesh shattered all doubts surrounding their batting abilities by piling on 330 runs at the Oval and then caught South Africa 21 runs short to begin with a memorable victory and condemn their opponents to their second defeat on the bounce.
"One other thing is that, it's very important for our players to stay calm. We have just won one match, there are eight more to go. This win doesn't take us anywhere in this tournament now. So, I don't think we have to be very excited right now. There is still a long way to go," Mortaza said.
Despite downing a superior ODI side on paper, Mortaza felt it was already time for him and his troops to train all their focus and energies on their next fixture - against New Zealand on Wednesday at the Oval.
"I will say that we don't have to look that far [semis] yet. It's just one match, we were focused today. This match is over and we should stop thinking about it," he added.
"We have to plan for our next match against New Zealand. And we have to make sure that we execute those plans. We should give more importance to that, I think. If we had lost today's match then I think it wouldn't have helped us. We won today, may be it will improve our confidence. But I think more challenges will come. May be more challenges are waiting for the batsmen in the next matches," Mortaza concluded.