For Bangladesh, every game since the loss to India has been a fight for survival. Going into the tournament, they had hoped to beat the West Indies as part of the plan to win three of the six league games. The other two were against Ireland and the Netherlands.
The humiliation against the West Indies not only shattered the cricketers and the country, it has also forced a serious rethink. After the halfway stage of the group campaign, there is an unsettled look about the team. Mohammad Ashraful’s inclusion is a constant point of debate and it is thought that he is being wasted at No. 7.
On Wednesday, two days ahead of their do-or-die match against England, the batting line-up looked set for a reshuffle again. The move to promote wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim to No. 4 hasn’t worked. The idea was to hold back skipper Shakib Al-Hasan so as to give the batsmen some confidence and some variation in the order.
Openers Tamim Iqbal and Imrul Kayes are both left-handers as are Junaid Siddique and Shakib. The right-handed Rahim is going through a bad patch, so, Raqibul Hasan, another right-hander is being considered at No. 4. That would push Rahim to No. 6 and Muhmadullah could replace Ashraful at No. 7.
The players looked recharged after a day of recreation at the Bhatiary Golf and Country Club and seemed to have got over the loss. The severe criticism in the media has meant the players are even more united.