|Player:||Habibul Bashar, V Sibanda, GB Brent, Mashrafe Mortaza, Mohammad Rafique, P Utseya|
DateLine: 9th February 2007
Bangladesh skipper Habibul Bashar has demanded an all-round improvement in his team's performance in the third one-day international against Zimbabwe here on Friday. Bangladesh slumped to an eight-wicket defeat against the home side on Tuesday, a result which levelled the four-match series at 1-1. Habibul was particularly concerned by his team's woeful batting which has given him serious cause for concern ahead of the World Cup which starts next month. "We need to take wickets and get more runs on the board, which we failed to do on Tuesday," the skipper told reporters. The tourists collapsed to 153 all out on Tuesday, a target which Zimbabwe reached with more than 14 overs in hand. "We lost too many wickets in the early stages of the match, we tried all we could but in the end a score of 153 was never going to be enough on that kind of a wicket," added Habibul. "Zimbabwe bowled well. Now it's up to us to do our best in the next game to get a win." Bangladesh won the first match by 45 runs, having scored an excellent 260-9; Zimbabwe's win ended a depressing run of 13 successive defeats. The only really consistent player among the 25 taking part so far has been Zimbabwe batsman Vusi Sibanda with scores of 47 and 93 not out, an average of 140. The others have been indifferent or up and down, with Habibul being typical with a 68 and then a duck. Gary Brent, for the home side, and tourist Mashrafe Mortaza have stood out in the bowling department. Bangladesh could be without Mohammad Rafique who was injured on Tuesday in a collision with Sibanda. Zimbabwe skipper Prosper Utseya believes his young team has developed match-winners in Sibanda and Brent, who took four wickets on Tuesday. "Sibanda was outstanding on Tuesday, as was Brent. But it was essentially an all-round team effort," said Utseya. With the series evenly-poised, and with much local publicity given to Sibanda's feats, at least the crowd should be much higher than the 500 or so seen on the first morning on Tuesday.