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Bangladesh will go out and attack South Africa

June 01, 2019 21:01 IST

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza wants his batsmen to take on the South Africa bowlers.

IMAGE: Mashrafe Mortaza's side are set to face a baptism of fire as they come up against the likes of Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi in their tournament bow at the Oval. Photograph: Kerry Marshall/Getty Images

Fighting fire with fire will be Bangladesh's modus operandi when they face South Africa's star-studded attack in their ICC World Cup 2019 opener on Sunday.

Ranked seventh in the world, Mashrafe Mortaza's side are set to face a baptism of fire as they come up against the likes of Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi in their tournament bow at the Oval.

 

Such pace has proven hugely invaluable in the nascent stages of the competition, with West Indies' fast bowlers ripping through Pakistan in a reminder of the damage express speed can do in English conditions.

A keen observer, skipper Mashrafe has already heeded that particular warning from Nottingham - but with top-order batsmen Soumya Sarkar and Tamin Iqbal bang in form, the Tigers skipper is banking on attack being the best form of defence against Rabada and co.

“Obviously they have been wicket taking bowlers for South Africa for a long time. And we are expecting to be tested as with the bounces and everything,” he said. “But there are other things that we are also ready for. We are pretty much confident to give our best shot.

“We will try to test them, as well. Soumya (Sarkar) is in good form. Tamim (Iqbal) is in good form.

“Hopefully they will test us and how we have to now going forward, how we have to play, we know our process, as well.

Once considered minnows of the international game, Bangladesh head into this year’s competition in fine fettle, having beaten every single one of the other competing nations.

The stellar form has brought added pressure back home, with much of the focus centring on seamer Mustafizur Rahman, but Mashrafe has backed his men to thrive.

“We don't have to think about what going on outside. It is important that we have our own belief that people,” he added.

“I’ll give you an example in Mustafizur. Now everyone doubting him. As a team, we have never been doubting ourselves. We always back Mustafizur.

“We knew he's our best bowler and still he can change the game; which is more important, what we are thinking ourselves, not thinking outside, because the problem, people don't think about the problems.

“People only think about the winning, only thinking about the individual performance, which isn't going to help us a lot.

“What is going to help is bonding with each other the last four years.

"Even the last round, we knew how things have been going with us.”

(International Cricket Council)