Cricket World Cup 2023 | Pakistan, Bangladesh look to bounce back from a state of despair

Time to go all out: Pakistan needs to do buck up as it still nurtures hopes of making the knockouts.

Time to go all out: Pakistan needs to do buck up as it still nurtures hopes of making the knockouts.
| Photo Credit: RITU RAJ KONWAR

Troubled by their dismaying performances and the resultant backlash, Pakistan and Bangladesh will sincerely look for course correction in their World Cup engagement at the Eden Gardens here on Tuesday.

While Pakistan, which has suffered four consecutive losses still nurtures hopes for a semifinal berth against the odds, Bangladesh, having lost five in a row, knows that its last-four dream is practically over.

The biggest challenge for both sides would be to reboot psychologically in order to bounce back from a state of despair. Even as Pakistan still has some motivation left, Bangladesh needs to back itself to fight for the country’s pride in the remaining matches. It is easier said than done, though.

It is high time that prominent Asian countries put all the off-field issues to the back burner in the larger interest of the team.

The inconsistent Babar Azam-led side, which lost its last match to South Africa by one wicket, must seize the key moments.

Apart from Babar, Mohammad Rizwan and Abdullah Shafique are among the leading run-getters for Pakistan and it is time for the other batters to step up. Shaheen Afridi is the side’s most successful bowler.

Fielding has been Pakistan’s weak link, which needs to be fixed urgently. Bangladesh, too, was no good in this department in its last outing. Its butter-fingered fielders let the Dutch score a 200-plus total and saw The Tigers experience an ignominious defeat here.

Other than Mahmudullah and Mushfiqur Rahim, the batters of the side led by Shakib Al Hasan have disappointed and would like to make amends. Bangladesh’s bowling has got the variety to restrict any opposition.

The two sides should work towards living up to the expectations of their traditional followers on a fresh pitch at the magnificent venue, which witnessed a Pakistani victory over Bangladesh in the 2016 T20 World Cup.

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