Cricket News By TODAYLIVESCORE.INFO - Bangladesh's pace attack isn't relying only on Mustafizur - Gibson. Ottis Gibson is pleased with the growth of Mustafizur Rahman and Taskin Ahmed
Ottis Gibson is pleased with the growth of Mustafizur Rahman and Taskin Ahmed
Bangladesh's fast bowling coach Ottis Gibson isn't too concerned with all the criticism about playing on slow wickets at home in the series against Australia and New Zealand ahead of T20 WC. The former West Indies pacer spoke to Cricbuzz regarding his expectations from the four-member pace unit in the global tournament, among other things. Here are the excerpts:
How prepared is the Bangladesh pace unit ahead of the global tournament?
I think over the last six to eight months, and the last three series that we have played and won, I think the fast bowling unit has done very well. We've done a lot of work together and everybody is in a good place with their game and game plans. I think the fast bowling unit will give a very good account of themselves in the tournament.
A global tournament is always an opportunity for people to showcase their talent and see how far they have developed, and this tournament is a good opportunity for us to see how far we, as a bowling unit, have come. Obviously a lot will be said about pitches in Bangladesh but I think we prepared ourselves not to be just good bowlers in Bangladesh but outside Bangladesh as well. I think the fast bowlers, whoever gets the opportunity to play, will really demonstrate that they have come a long way in the last six to eight months.
There has been a lot of talks regarding the slow pitches at home against Australia and New Zealand? Is it ideal to prepare in those sorts of pitches?
I think lot has been said about bowling in slow pitches in Bangladesh but I think when we were in New Zealand last year or early this year, Taskin [Ahmed] showed what he can do on those pitches, and Taskin bowled really well. And he was probably the best bowler in that series. Taskin in the Test series against Zimbabwe and ODIs showed how much he improved. We have Mustafizur [Rahman] doing his thing, Shoriful [Islam] showing improvement, and [Mohammad] Saifuddin showing improvement as well. Any one of the four guys can impact the game and had a good World Cup.
I am looking forward to seeing them playing in different conditions. I don't want to think that we can only bowl on slow pitches because we practice on different skills, and those guys will have the opportunity to use those skills
About the pitches that we played on in the last two series, the point is we had fast bowlers but the fast bowlers of Australia and New Zealand had bigger names than ours and we were able to out bowl them. Without thinking too much about pitches, it is how we adapt to the conditions that will make the difference in the World Cup. It's not about slow or fast pitches but how we adapt to the conditions. I think with Mustafizur, Shoriful, Taskin and Saifuddin, we will able to use the conditions and use the skills that is required in the conditions.
If the wickets are slow what kind of combination are you expecting?
The make-up of the team and the unit in terms of who plays is always up to the captain and coach, and my job is to prepare the fast bowlers. Like I said, whichever combination the captain and the coach decide to put out in the park, (my job is to) to put them (fast bowlers) in a position where they will be able to assess the conditions and be able to perform. Ultimately it is about trying to impact games and win games.
Mustafizur has been doing well in the IPL? Do you feel it is very encouraging considering the World Cup will be played in Oman and UAE?
I am not surprised to see him doing well in IPL. He is been improving nicely. He got a very good control on what he does and he understands (the role) what he has been given. I am very pleased to see him doing well in IPL and hopefully by the time we get to Dubai, the form that he is now in can continue throughout the tournament (T20 WC).
What is Mustafizur's biggest strength right now?
Mustafizur is one of our most experienced players and it's good to see him using his experiences and assessing the conditions, and that's one of his strengths. He is able to assess conditions quite quickly and decide how he is going to bowl on that pitch. We saw him doing that against Australia when he decided very early that the pitch is not really where one can bowl fast on. So you have to have a lot of courage, and his courage was very effective over the course of that series. His economy was something unbelievable – like three-point something. He is a very smart bowler.
How is the competition among the other pacers in the team?
In T20 format there is a group of four and Mustafizur is the main man. I think any one of those guys can come in and make a difference. I think we prepare for that and practice for that and hopefully whichever fast bowler gets the opportunity to play in the World Cup will go and have a really good tournament. So I am not really worried about the guys that we have got because I know when they get the opportunity they will do well for themselves.
Mortaza recently came to the SBNS and shared his knowledge with Taskin Ahmed about bowling slower deliveries and cutters. Do you feel cricketers like him should come forward at times and help other bowlers?
Mashrafe is a legend for Bangladesh and he had done very well for Bangladesh. It's good to see that he's prepared to go and give back (his experience and knowledge) to the current players. I always tell Taskin and any bowler that I worked with, that they must always seek to him. If Mashrafe is prepared to share his experience with the guys it's always good for them and for the team as a whole.
Since the last T20 WC, Mustafizur is leading the pace unit for Bangladesh? Do you feel others need to step up as well to do well in the World Cup?
I don't think we will be reliant on one person like Mustafizur. I think Taskin, Shoriful or Saifuddin will have a very good World Cup. So which ever combination the management decides to put up those guys can take the opportunity and make the most of it.