The T20 International Cup began with an upset of sorts as Scotland defeated Bangladesh by six runs on Sunday (October 17) in Oman. Chasing 141, Bangladesh could only reach 134 in their allotted 20 overs. All the batters managed to get starts but none could kick on and get a big score. Dejected by the bitter loss, skipper Mahmudullah said the batting is a cause of concern.
Barring Mushfiqur Rahim, who top-scored with 38 runs, the remaining batters struggled for timing. None of the top-order batters could strike at above 120. The team’s heavy reliance on Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan is pretty much evident. Lack of scoring with intent and playing a fearless brand of cricket is what has hurt Mahmudullah the most.
"I am very much frustrated," Mahmudullah said. "Our batting is a concern. We have to bat better. We have to play aggressive cricket, regardless of the situation. We have a deep batting line-up, with Mohammad Saifuddin at No. 9. We may need to think over some changes tomorrow."
The pitch had no demons whatsoever as Scotland batted earlier by mixing caution with aggression. Bangladeshi batters failed to kick on after good starts as Shakib and Mahmudullah were dismissed for 20 and 23 respectively. Mahmudullah said the team struggled to hit boundaries, adding that the team has the skills to score quickly but it was an off day where everyone struggled. Mahmudullah said the team needs to bat better in the coming games.
"We didn't deliberately bat slowly. We couldn't hit those boundaries. We have to bat better next time. A lot of things will come up since we lost the game. I think we didn't play well today, but we are a good T20 team. We have the capability. When we play our best cricket, we can win games," said Mahmudullah.
After this unexpected loss, Bangladesh have to quickly regroup themselves and hope to win their remaining games.