Letdown by the Indian selectors’ decision to send a second-string squad to Bangladesh for the 3-match ODI series, Bangladesh wicketkeeper-captain Mushfiqur Rahim has promised to give them a fitting reply by defeating the Indian cricket team on the field.
"I didn't expect them to take this series so lightly," Mushfiqur told reporters in Mirpur when asked about the Indian squad.
Citing the BCCI’s stand to not invite Bangladesh for a home series, he said: "We have a chance to give a reply on the field. There is extra motivation. They haven't invited us yet so if we do well in this series, it sends a message.”
Even though the new Indian side is short on star value, they have capable players to win matches. Rahim, though, has warned India that their pride is at stake.
"We have defeated their best team in the past. They have a young team, and despite the standard of the IPL, international cricket is a more difficult stage. And one should not forget that if they lose, India will lose, not India A. The pressure will be on them. I know most of them, and have seen them play. Even though I haven't played against them, I have some idea. Shakib [Al Hasan] has played against all of them, so we will pick his brain. In this day and age, it is hard not to have knowledge on a player," said the 25-year old.
But at the same time, he also conceded that his side will be under more pressure than usual to win this series since some of the first choice players aren’t playing for India.
“After seeing their team, I realised that there will be more expectations on us. But usually there is more pressure when we play against India, even when they had Dhoni. Everyone wants us to beat them, so pressure was always there. We have to focus on what we are doing, since we have struggled in the last few months. If we can play to our potential, it is not impossible to beat their team,” he said.
The first ODI is on the 15th of June.