Shakib back to his old self? [ sports ] 20/03/2017
Shakib back to his old self?
Three days before the Test started, Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusingha bemoaned the lack of experience in the Bangladesh bowling ranks, saying that apart from Shakib Al Hasan, the other bowlers had played just 15 Test matches as of the Galle Test match that ended in a 259-run defeat for Bangladesh.

What he said then was taken by many to be a slight directed at Shakib, perhaps to fire up Bangladesh's highest wicket-taker.

"Shakib is not the same bowler from 2010 who used to run through teams on helpful conditions," he had said on March 12.

Exactly a week later, Shakib had accepted a player-of-the-series trophy which had as much to do with second-innings bowling figures of four for 74 as his first-innings hundred. To top it off, it was not a really helpful pitch and Shakib displayed all his guile and cricketing intelligence to get those wickets.

"It's nothing like that," said Shakib when asked whether the coach's comments fired him up. "I always try to perform my best for the team; sometimes it clicks, sometimes it doesn't. Maybe after this match the coach will say I am bowling like I used to again,” finished Shakib with a chuckle that was echoed in the press conference room.

With it being an auspicious occasion and everyone in good cheer, there was the opportunity to ask the coach about Shakib's bowling in light of his most recent performance. He first smiled and asked, "Who said that? Me? Do you have a record?" When assured that there was in fact a record, he proceeded.

"I had seen him bowling against South Africa in 2010 or 2011. He was a different bowler, and he showed it to me. We had a very good discussion on what he is not doing now. We discussed after seeing video footage. He bowled very well in this game. When Fizz was bowling from one end, he checked on the runs from the far end. At that time, he came back to the game."

So Shakib is indeed back to his old self, according to the coach.
 
 
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