Zimbabwe head coach Lalchand Rajput has urged his top-order to step up and take up more responsibility in the ongoing three-match One Day International series in Bangladesh after losing a close first encounter at the hands of the Tigers.
Rajput, however, is pleased the way Zimbabwe has shown fight in the ODI series opener at Mirpur Stadium, but also stressed on the need that the top-five need to do better with the willow and score big runs on the board to put up a better challenge against the hosts.
Rajput told reporters, “If you look at the last game, we should have batted better. The top-five have to take the responsibility and if one batsman gets a big score, I think we will definitely give [Bangladesh] a run for the money. I am really happy we gave a good fight in spite of the position. [Sean] Williams and [Kyle] Jarvis really batted well. Cephas [Zhuwao] gave a good start but there are areas where we have to work very hard. The key area is the top five. 'The senior players have to take responsibility. Masakadza got a hundred in the practice game so hopefully, he can convert into the ODIs.”
He is also hoping that his struggling Brendan Taylor will bounce back in the second ODI to be played on Wednesday (October 24) in Chittagong. He added, “BT is getting starts so hopefully a big score will come. I am sure they also feel they have to get a big score. It is coming, I am sure it is coming very soon.”
On Zimbabwe's failure to make it to the 2019 World Cup, Rajput said, “It is difficult (not playing the World Cup) but I am a positive person. We have got to get those positive vibes. You have to try to win any game, irrespective (of participating) in the World Cup. The players are looking forward to win.”
Former Indian cricketer signed off by saying, “It is a long list (of losses) but in the first eight games we didn't have our players. Now the senior players have returned and we are getting closer but not crossing the line. South Africa were 100 for 7 [101 for 7] in one game but we couldn't win. We are getting it together but the day will come soon that we will cross the line.”