IRELAND TOUR OF BANGLADESH, 2023
“No one said Test cricket’s was easy” – Allan Donald
by Atif Azam • Published on Thu, Apr 6, 2023
Bangladesh pace bowling coach Allan Donald was surprised that Shakib al Hasan did not bowl much in the third day against Ireland as he felt it would have benefited the Bangladesh side.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Lorcan Tucker made his Test debut a memorable one by scoring a brilliant 108 off 162 balls while Andy McBrine (71 not out) and Harry Tector (55) also made commendable contributions as Ireland finished the third day at 286-8 in their second innings.
Ireland started the day with a deficit of 128 runs and six wickets in hand, and are now leading by 131 runs with two wickets in hand.
Bangladesh’s veteran left-arm spinner Shakib al Hasan, who came to open the bowling on the third day, just bowled only six overs in four spells to end the day. His decision to bowl only three overs in the first innings and thirteen overs so far in the second innings eventually turned out to be the talking point as the tourists dominated with the bat.
“I must admit, I have no idea (why he didn’t bowl much),” Donald said.
“He seems fit. He came off a couple of times just for like bathroom breaks. But I’m not quite sure. I think he wanted to give the attack a chance to go and do the job but I really don’t know why he hasn’t bowled enough today,” he said after the day’s play.
“You know, 13 overs, two for 20-odd. I thought the second new ball, when we took it today, was gonna be a big factor. And it honestly didn’t spin like it did last night. I thought it was gonna be a new ball type of pitch, and once you get in on this wicket, you could score runs. But that question is better suited for Shakib,” he said, adding that if Shakib had bowled more overs, things could have been different.
“Yeah, I’m sure (we missed him) because what Shakib does amazingly well is he shuts one end down and because he’s such an experienced campaigner, he varies his pace really smartly. Although there was no real turn all day long, I thought he would’ve been a guy that would control one end and really shut one end down,” he said.
However, Donald credited the bowling line-up for the effort they put in, despite the meagre returns on a difficult day for the hosts.
“I thought Miraz, Taijul, the three seamers tried their guts out today. And it didn’t quite happen. But tomorrow is a big morning. I mean, they are 130 runs ahead now if I’m correct. So, tomorrow we gotta go bang, bang quickly and get batting,” he said.
Just after tea on day three, Shakib looked to be in discomfort with his hand after trying to stop a ball but whether that prompted him not to bowl much could not be verified.
Donald said that he is impressed with the way Ireland made a comeback in the Test match but added that Bangladesh could have been more creative in conditions that offered them nothing.
“Let me tell you, that’s one of the flattest wickets I’ve seen. And there’s not a lot of life for the quicks in here, especially halfway down. And we’ve seen a couple of balls not carry to the keeper. Hey, but that’s Test cricket. No one said Test cricket’s gonna be easy.
“We gotta deal with it. We’ve gotta find ways. We’ve gotta be creative, we’ve gotta be patient, persistent. If you know that you’re doing everything possible, sitting on the sideline there, every plan that we discussed on the breaks, try this, let’s go this for a while and didn’t come off. And that’s what had happened today