Gearing up for their biggest battle against defending champions India in the cricket World Cup quarter-finals, Bangladesh chief coach Chandika Hathurusingha today said his wards “do not have to prove anything to anyone”.
“For us, we have nothing to prove to anyone because we know that we are good. And that’s precisely the reason we are here. We are here to embrace the opportunity presented to us and enjoy the situation,” Hathurusingha of Sri Lankan origin said during an interaction at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
The coach didn’t swell too much on the strength of their formidable opponents but praised India’s fast bowling unit.
“India are playing very good cricket. They are a good batting side. But the key has been how well their fast bowlers have bowled. That’s one area that we would probably keep an eye on,” Hathurusingha said.
He also shied away from talking about Bangladesh’s 2007 shock win over India at Port of Spain.
The 46-year-old, who played 26 Tests for Sri Lanka as an opener between 1991 and 1999, has been a calming influence on the team. Along with Heath Streak and Ruwan Kalpage, he has got the team on an upward curve in the past eight months as Bangladesh played some good cricket.
Asked what has been the difference between Bangladesh teams of the past and this current batch, which has qualified for the last eight, Hathurusingha replied, “I can’t speak about past as I have not seen Bangladesh’s dressing rooms of earlier times. But this team believes in itself. I think we always talk about clear role for our players.
“The boys have been told to play with freedom. We are not afraid to make decisions in the middle and the culture we have created in the dressing room has also helped.”
Is there any recipe for success, the coach answered, “I don’t think there is any secret to our success. The preparation was thorough. Not playing a lot of cricket in the lead up to the World Cup was a good thing as we reached Brisbane bit early to acclimatise to the Australian conditions. That was a key thing.