Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza has called for more consistency in the bowling and batting efforts after New Zealand handed them an 8-wicket defeat in the series opener One Day International of the three-match ODI series in Napier on Wednesday (13th February).
Mortaza has admitted that they were struggling with both the bat and bowl in Napier, saying he doesn't want to make any excuses for the defeat but insisted that the Tigers will bounce back in the second ODI to be played at Hagley Oval, Christchurch on 16th February.
Bangladesh used as many as seven bowlers in their arsenal, but failed to find the breakthrough, as Mohammad Mithun, who top scored with 62 off 90, was the only batsman who managed to challenge the potent Kiwi bowling attack, while Mohammad Saifuddin’s 41 helped the hosts to cross the 200-run mark in Napier.
Chasing a modest 233-run target, Martin Guptill’s unbeaten 117 with significant contributions by Henry Nicholls (53) and Ross Taylor (45*) helped the Black Caps to cross the line by 8 wickets here.
Mortaza said at the post-match presentation ceremony, “It was tough. We were struggling with the bat, lost too many wickets at the start. They bowled well but we lost too many. There are no excuses.”
He continued, “We need a week to adjust to the conditions, but I don't want to make any excuses. We will give our best in the next game. I think batting is a concern, but at the same time, the bowling also needs some work. We did not bowl badly today but 232 is hard to defend.”
Meanwhile, New Zealand captain Kane Williamson was all in awe for his bowlers and Martin Guptill after their massive win over Bangladesh in the first ODI at home.
He said, “It was a very good performance. The bowlers set the tone first up and we were able to pick the early wickets which we are always after. From there on we were able to pick regular wickets. Bangladesh batted a long way down and made life difficult at times even when you thought you are in a position of strength. Then Martin was brilliant, a fantastic hundred and everyone did their part.”
Williamson signed off by saying, “Something we always focus on is the attitude on the field and intensity we bring. We were good in the field, hope we back that up in the next game. It is just going back to basics of what you are trying to achieve as a group and today was a good example of that.”
(With AFP Inputs)