big milestones, but miles to go in all formats


It has been an overall productive 2022 for Bangladesh, with important series wins across formats against the likes of South Africa, India and New Zealand, but the team is hungry for more success.

Now, Bangladesh are getting used to their two captains, while also identifying future leaders. They will stick with different head coaches as they look to give their new T20 ideology a run, but the Test team will need to have a better mindset.

BCB’s Cricket Operations Committee chairman Jalal Yunus, who was appointed to the post exactly a year ago, is overseeing these small and big changes in Bangladesh cricket. But he is more interested in seeing strength across formats.

Younus was in the thick of things from day one of his new job at a time when Bangladesh cricket was at a very low point. They were defeated in the home series by Pakistan after their T20 World Cup campaign failed.

Younis is one of the most experienced cricket officials in the country. But for years, despite being renowned for his organizing ability, he did not have a central role in cricket’s decision-making. That changed last year when he took over the role of chairman of cricket operations.

Twelve months on and Bangladesh are a very different side. He has made significant strides in ODIs while showing glimpses of improvement in Tests and T20Is. It was not enough for former left-arm fast bowler Younis. But he has played cricket and been an organizer for long enough to know that progress at the international level takes time.

If 2022 has taught Bangladesh anything, it is that good leadership delivers steady success. Tamim Iqbal led the team to multiple ODI series victories, which helped them to secure early qualification for the 2023 World Cup. Tamim himself is batting well, and has allowed the rest of the team to flourish in their preferred format.

Meanwhile, Shakib Al Hasan took over both the Test and T20I captaincy during the crisis. Mominul Haque’s form had dropped when the board contacted Shakib in May. It was almost a similar situation in the T20I side in July, when the board named Shakib as the captain of that side as well.

Younis said Tamim would continue in the 2023 ODI World Cup, but he was also happy to see Liton Das play against India recently. Mehdi Hasan Miraj and Nurul Hasan have also shown leadership qualities that have impressed Younis.

“We will keep Shakib and Tamim together,” he told ESPNcricinfo. “We may not have announced it, but we have informed Tamim about our plan. His tenure is till the 2023 World Cup. Liton has done well in ODIs. He may step in in Shakib’s absence in Tests as well. Because he is the vice-captain.” There. He has proved it. Miraj is another future captain. We tried (Nurul Hasan) Sohan as captain. There are new people who can handle. ,

Younis said that S Sriram, who was in charge of the T20 team for three months, will return as T20 consultant. But he is also being sought for a wider role as a more permanent member of the coaching staff.

“We brought in (Shriram) as a T20 consultant, and we are considering him as a T20 specialist, so he will come back. We haven’t decided yet, but we want him as the regular coach. We have not decided on his status.” ,” He said.

Yunus noted that Sriram showed an ability to quickly read players’ mindsets and was patient during his short stint as coach.

“I think (Shriram) is a very good manager of players. He has the right mix of dealing with players. I have seen him scold someone for making a silly mistake, but when required, he talks to them. sits down to do.” ,

“He is a deep thinking and proactive coach. He works one-to-one with the players. He can read players mind very well. He doesn’t get frustrated easily. He shows patience and confidence in the players “

“We want to get into the habit of winning in both Tests and T20s. We don’t lack the skills, but we don’t have the right mindset. We need to get used to the patience and patience in the longer format.”

Yunus on the immediate challenges facing Bangladesh

Younus said that he wants to see players develop in T20, for which he has separated coaching and allowed more players to come into the setup. There hasn’t been much success for Bangladesh in the shortest format, with their only wins in the T20 World Cup coming against Zimbabwe and the Netherlands. Younus admitted that the entire philosophy of the team has to be changed.

“We have to be serious about the T20 team. We tried to make a new T20 team. We have been more or less successful with the ideology. We have separated the coaching. We tried different players for T20 Is.”

“We want to promote new and young players for this format. Many of them are not ready. At the highest level, there is no scope to teach them how to play T20. It’s the middle.” We need a very strong infrastructure to prepare them for fielding, batting and bowling.”

Yunus said that Bangladesh is also looking at someone as the Director of High Performance to centralize the development of players.

“We won the ODI series against South Africa but we didn’t do well in the Test series. We won one Test in New Zealand. I don’t think that’s enough. We want to focus on Tests and T20s.”

“We want to make a coordinated effort to strengthen this aspect of our game. We are looking at bringing in a high performance director for the overall planning of Bangladesh cricket’s structure. All these changes should bear fruit in a year or two. Will give.”

But as with most things in Bangladesh cricket, any potential progress comes with its share of challenges. Younus runs the Cricket Steering Committee, which means he expects the best players in the country to make it to the senior sides. But the general paucity of cricket grounds across the country is hindering the development of young talent.

“We lack infrastructure. This is our No. 1 hurdle. We need to overcome it. We cannot improve domestic cricket with just a few grounds. We need more grounds around Dhaka so that we can train throughout the year.”

“I saw that all the teams are training at the Academy ground (in Mirpur), be it the Premier League, women’s teams, NCL teams or age-group teams. We are working hard to build cricket grounds around Dhaka city. Trying,” he said. Said.

Nevertheless, Younus believes that the senior team, especially the Test team, can improve with a better mindset. He believes that there are players keen to play Tests but who are not in red-ball cricket, they will be “phased out”.

“We don’t want to think of winning Tests as something that happens once in a blue moon. We want to get into the habit of winning both Tests and T20Is. We don’t lack the skills, but we don’t have the right mindset. We have to ” In the longer format, one gets used to patience and patience.

“Many players are very interested to play the longer version, so we will include them in the Test team. Those who don’t want to play can be phased out in a year or two.”

Younis praised the team’s fast bowling group which has improved manifold in the last 12 months. This is something that hasn’t happened in the batting department, although Zakir Hasan’s maiden Test hundred is a relief.

“Fast bowlers can now take 20 wickets in a Test match, something which never happened in the past. They have improved a lot. We sent many promising bowlers to Chattogram to train with the senior team coaches. When you compare We do development with fast bowlers, we are not getting the same result from batsmen.

“We promoted Zakir Hasan, who seems to have the flair for the highest level. Many young fast bowlers are keen to play Tests. There are very few batsmen who are like that.”

Younis has surprised many within the BCB and the Bangladesh team with his methodical and steady approach. He is aware of the myriad issues inside and outside the team, but he hopes to tackle them one thing at a time.

There is no one size fits all scenario in Bangladesh cricket. Luckily, Yunus is aware of this. However, he will take all three teams as far as he can, with an open mind and realistic expectations.

Mohammad Issam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84


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