World Cup 2019 Review: Bangladesh
Three ruthless wins against South Africa, West Indies and Afghanistan would have been acceptable to past Bangladesh teams in the World Cup. But the current one would have been disappointed at how the rest of their campaign went.
Despite finishing eighth on the points table, Bangladesh walked away with a lot of goodwill and respect for the way in which they played their cricket being competitive and refusing to give in until the last ball.
A lot of this came down to the performances of Shakib Al Hasan (606 runs, 2 centuries, 5 half-centuries, 11 wickets) and Mushfiqur Rahim (367 runs, 1 century, 2 half-centuries). Their runs against South Africa, Afghanistan, and Australia saw Bangladesh being competitive, inspiring them to wins against Afghanistan and South Africa and to register their highest ever total in ODI cricket against Australia, even if it came in defeat.
Soumya Sarkar impressed as an opening batsman despite lacking a big score (his highest was 42) while Liton Das was exceptional in the run chase against West Indies. Mahmudullah managed one big score of note in an ultimately doomed chase against Australia, and Mohammad Saifuddin managed one half-century in defeat against India.
Mustafizur Rahman and Mohammad Saifuddin led the bowling with 20 and 13 wickets respectively. Mustafizur gradually became more and more difficult to negate as the tournament progressed due to his skill in bowling cutters, but the rest of the bowling was a mixed bag.
Captain Mashrafe Mortaza took only one wicket in eight matches and Mehidy Hasan managed only six wickets, despite being their most economical bowler at the competition.
Better bowling and fielding is something that Bangladesh will look to improve for the future, while developing consistency in the likes of players such as Das, Sarkar and Sabbir Rahman will ensure that there is less pressure on the likes of Shakib, Mushfiqur, Mahmudullah and Tamim Iqbal to score runs consistently.
A new captain may also need to be identified due to uncertainty over Mortaza's future in the format, while a new coaching staff is also needed following the clearout of the backroom immediately after their campaign ended.
Also see – Dream 11 predictions