‘Nothing Intentional’ – BCB’s National Selector Habibul Bashar On ‘Raging Turner’ Dhaka Pitch For BAN vs NZ Clash

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) national selector Habibul Bashar talked about the pitch at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka for Bangladesh vs New Zealand 2nd Test. He said that they weren’t doing anything intentionally and admitted that the wicket there had something to do with the soil.

The pitch of Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka came under scrutiny after the second Test match between Bangladesh and New Zealand concluded. It was a proper rank turner and the batters had no clue how much the ball would turn.

Out of 36 wickets that fell in the game, 30 were picked by spinners, which gives a partial idea about the pitch. BCB wanted to have a spin-favoring track but the backfired as New Zealand defeated them by 4 wickets.

The pitch was even criticized by New Zealand skipper Tim Southee. After the game, he mentioned that this was one of the worst pitches that he ever come across in his career.

Habibul Bashar spoke about the pitch preparation and admitted that nobody would’ve wanted to play on that wicket. He blamed the soil in Dhaka for the way the pitch played out. Speaking to Cricbuzz, he explained:

“We would obviously want to have a spin-friendly wicket against New Zealand but the only problem when we try to prepare a spin track in Dhaka, it turns out that way and probably it has got something to do with the soil. If we had tried to make a similar wicket in Chattogram or Sylhet it wouldn’t had been the same case. 

“So I don’t think there is anything intentional regarding the wicket in Dhaka. I don’t think anyone would like to play on this kind of wicket because if you want to have the ideal wicket it is the wicket in Sylhet where there is something for everyone. What I understand that because of soil when Mirpur wicket is prepared to assist the spinners it turns out that way.”

People highlight (the Dhaka wicket) very much – Habibul Bashar

Habibul Bashar further added that people hype Dhaka’s wicket too much and stressed that they played on different wickets against Asian teams. He highlighted that when they play on spin-friendly tracks there’s a lot of noise as compared to playing on green tracks. He added:

“I think what people don’t understand is that we highlight (the Dhaka wicket) very much but we didn’t play on similar wickets against Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan or Ireland. It is only when we play against New Zealand, Australia or South Africa though – we are not playing against them for quite some time – when we play in this kind of wicket and it grabs all the attention.” 

“You just see its not long ago when pacers took most of the wickets against Afghanistan and Ireland and against India we had a comparatively sporting wicket while against Sri Lanka we did not play on similar surface. Our captain said that when we are playing with three pace bowlers no one raises fingers but when we are playing with three spinners there is a lot of talk. When we are playing on this kind of wicket we hog the spotlight but when we are playing on a green top we don’t have similar kind of noise.”

The series between Bangladesh and New Zealand ended in a draw. The two teams will now be taking on each other in a three-match ODI series in New Zealand, starting 17th December.

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