Bat well, then all will be well: Shakib tells India

Shakib Al Hasan — who led the spin attack for Bangladesh — feels that after that Test series, Aussies came to India reeling under pressure. “India always had the upper hand, because the Australians came to India as underdogs,” Shakib told Sportstar during an exclusive chat from Dhaka on Tuesday.

The star Bangladeshi cricketer, who is also the skipper of the country’s T20 side, feels that India ‘just needs to ensure’ that there is no batting collapse.   -  AFP

 

It has been a long Asian tour for Australia. Before coming to India for a well-spread-out limited overs series, the Aussies had to tackle Bangladesh last month. While they did manage to level the Test series, the host side posted a historic win against Steven Smith’s men in the first Test.

And Shakib Al Hasan — who led the spin attack for Bangladesh — feels that after that Test series, Aussies came to India reeling under pressure. “India always had the upper hand, because the Australians came to India as underdogs,” Shakib told Sportstar during an exclusive chat from Dhaka on Tuesday.

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The star Bangladeshi cricketer, who is also the skipper of the country’s T20 side, feels that India ‘just needs to ensure’ that there is no batting collapse.

“India has a very good bowling line-up, which looks in real good shape. It just needs to ensure that there is no slip-up in the batting. Once that is taken care of, there’s no reason for India to worry.” - Shakib Al Hasan

“Look, India has a very good bowling line-up, which looks in real good shape. It just needs to ensure that there is no slip-up in the batting. Once that is taken care of, there’s no reason for India to worry,” Shakib said, pointing out that the varied bowling options would help the host call the shots in all kinds of conditions.

“At home, India is a dangerous side. There’s not much I can tell them (the Indian players) because I know they already have a proper plan, and the way in which Hardik (Pandya) helped the side bounce back in Chennai the other day, it speaks volumes for their resilience,” Shakib, who is undergoing a break from Test cricket, said.

Regarded as one of the most destructive all-rounders in the world, Shakib, also said, “Actually, there are so many match-winners in India that it should never be a problem for the team to turn things around.”

Last month, Shakib played the key role as Bangladeshspun out Australia to clinch the first Test in Mirpur. The cricketing world was then busy speculating on the ‘mystery delivery’ Bangladesh came up with during that match.

Even Shakib shies away from revealing what that is.

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The 30-year-old says that India has one of the best fast bowling attacks in the world now. “All of them are so good that they can deliver on any kind of wicket. They should just keep that going.”

As the Virat Kohli-led side gears up for the second ODI in Kolkata on Thursday, the poster boy of Bangladeshcricket has a piece of advice for the ‘old friends’. “It is tough to say how to keep the Aussies under pressure. But their record in the Asian countries hasn’t been impressive. They lost in Sri Lanka, in Bangladesh. So,India should make the most of it and tighten the noose,” Shakib, who has represented Bangladesh in 51 Tests and 177 ODIs, said, hoping that India would maintain the winning run.