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Bangladesh Need to develop winning mindset – Herath

Rangana Herath has been appointed as the new spin expert to replace Daniel Vettori by the Bangladesh Cricket Board. Herath, who has over 500 international wickets to his name, believes his team has to create a winning attitude ahead of the T20 World Cup later this year. He also stated that the various functions of spinners in the national structure must be defined.

The following are some excerpts:

How enthusiastic are you about your work as Bangladesh’s spin bowling consultant? What prompted you to accept the position?

It’s a great honor and privilege to work with the Bangladesh cricket team. Like any former player aspiring to be a coach, it’s a kind of dream for me to get associated with a leading country, and so I am privileged to join the BCB. I mean it has been three years since I retired, and so I thought I could share my knowledge and experience with the spinners. At the same time, Bangladesh is quite similar to Sri Lanka as far as the conditions and the mindset and culture are concerned. One of the reasons I chose Bangladesh is that I know the mindset, preparation and practice ethics, and everything … and compared to Sri Lanka it’s the same actually.

Assigned to the T20 World Cup till the end of the season

As you said I have been appointed till the T20 World Cup and we have Zimbabwe, Australia, New Zealand, England, and then the T20 World Cup. In that case, what I realize (is that) in the recent past spinners like Mehedy Hasan, Shakib, and Taijul and there are a few (other) spinners as well …

I think they are doing well. And what I see is that they are consistently getting opportunities and that is very important as a spinner. When you are getting opportunities consistently … that is how you can build confidence and create a team environment and mindset, which is very good and I would like to continue with it in the future as well.  I would like to say that before the coming series (rubbers at home),

we are playing T20Is in Zimbabwe. If our team can build the winning mindset during the Zimbabwe tour and can continue with that against Australia, New Zealand, and England, it will be good before the T20 World Cup. That is how we need to look at the future.

What is your opinion of a spinner’s function in the game’s shorter formats?

It always depends on the situation. As a cricketer, you must see the situation and have the awareness and it can be an attacking role or it can be a containing role. But it is very important to work in partnerships – with fast bowlers and spinners and it depends on the situation.

I cannot say this is the role in T20s and that is something that needs to be done. But what I can say is that we have to analyze the situation and we must have awareness and accordingly adjust with the situation. There could be situations like (playing the) attacking (role) and at the same time containing runs. It’s more important that we work as a unit with fast bowlers, and when they come together I am sure we can go a long way.

Bangladesh’s spinners have a reputation for limited runs. Do you think a strategy like this will succeed across platforms?

That is what I am saying that you need to identify your roles, and that is our responsibility to explain what is your role is and what we are expecting. In that case, we must have proper communication with the spinners and we can do that one-to-one or as a group along with the head coach. And explain to them what we are expecting from them and what is their role. I am sure that if we can have proper communication, we can execute our plans accordingly.

Is it possible for you to share your knowledge with a larger group of spinners outside of the national setup?

you know I have been appointed for the national team for four and a half months and I need to spend more time with the national spinners. Hopefully, after that stint, we can look at that (working with a bigger pool of spinners). With the COVID-19 situation and all those bio-bubbles, we cannot move here and there.

Bangladesh has a large number of finger spinners. Would you like to investigate the possibility of bringing in a wrist spinner?

That’s a good question. When we see India, there are Chahal and Kuldeep, or say for example Rashid (Khan) and Adil (Rashid). They are bringing something special to the table. They can be expensive, but if they have the wicket-taking ability, I don’t mind having a wrist spinner, as they can have a huge impact on the team and play a role in winning matches.

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