14 Days: Taijul Islam aims to be at the top
14 days to go….
Taijul Islam might just be another left-arm spinner to make it into the Bangladeshi 11, but his performances at a very early stage of his new sprung career, has hit the record books. The hat trick against Zimbabwe in December last year, made him bask a dream ODI debut, as he became the first bowler ever to achieve such a feat on debut. Just a month before being the first player to pick a hat-trick on debut, in only his third Test match, he took 8 wickets for 39 runs, the best figures by any Bangladeshi bowler in Tests, to topple Shakib Al Hasan’s 6 years held record of 7 for 36, made against New Zealand in 2007. The 8-39 bowling figure is also the third best by any left arm spinner in a test match, with only Rangana Herath of Sri Lanka and late 19th century county cricketer Johnny Briggs, to have better figures.
With such a spectacular start to his career, any one might expect him to outshine in the World Cup. But the question that arises now is his experience in hand. Being just a 5 Test match and a single ODI old, Taijul might simply be a rookie to handle all the pressure in such a Brobdingnagian tournament. However, in a late interview, Taijul mentioned that his confidence is what overshadows his inexperience. “It is important to be confident. I am thinking of performing in the World Cup. I am not thinking about the single ODI that I have played. I have played both the Dhaka Premier League and Bangladesh Premier League in the past, but I think it is a person’s confidence that is most important. ”
The Natore boy may have only tasted success in Bangladesh and might have played a couple of Tests in the West Indies, but is yet to hit the New Zealand and Australian Soil. However, the bounce in the Oceanic pitches, uncommon in Bangladesh, could be used as a weapon for the Bangladeshi spinners, not just for the seamers. The bounce in the pitch and the large grounds, could someway benefit the spinners in the Bangladesh team, in getting breakthroughs, if they are guided well. Even, before reaching Australia, Taijul had stated precisely watching all the series taking place in Australia, to identify how the pitch reacts.
Taijul might still be young. Yet his fearless attitude towards the game and eminent targets, could strengthen the Bangladeshi attack, besides finding him a perm place in the team. His target of being among the top 10 wicket takers this World Cup, is no shooting fish in a barrel. It would require immense hard work, proper preparations, along with some luck. However, his body language and preparations, both personal and those provided by the board, tend to make him look prepared. Further toning up his target was Shakib Al Hasan’s brilliant performance with the ball in the Big Bash League. He’s also been working on turning the ball both ways, in order to add variety to his bowling, making him less predictable to the opponent batsmen. With veteran left arm spinner, Abdur Razzak, not given any further contracts, it can well be identified, that BCB has long term plans with this youngster. Its now his duty to to carry on the brilliance sparked at the very beginning of his career, with the brightest bowling in the World Cup.
Chowdhury Wafee Daraiat
Last Reviewed: Taskin Ahmed
*This is a feature series reviewing the 15 players in the Bangladeshi squad, in the last 15 days before the start of the World Cup