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Bangladesh deserved their place in the semi-finals of the ICC Champions Trophy even though it came with the help of some luck of the weather. But on Thursday, against India, their luck ran out and the Bangla Tigers were no match for a far superior India at Edgbaston in Birmingham. At the end, India emerged victorious by nine wickets to set up a mouth-watering clash with Pakistan in the final on Sunday. It was the first time that Bangladesh had reached the last four of a major tournament.
Despite the reasons to celebrate, captain Mashrafe Mortaza believed his team need to get mentally tougher for such events in the future. “Yeah, obviously the boys should feel pride, but I think in a tournament like this, you have to be, I think, physically or skill-wise at your peak. Yes, we are coming up still. We need to learn so many things. But I think we need to be a little bit more ready mentally for playing this sort of match,” he said in the post-match press conference.
Bangladesh looked good in the middle when Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim kept them going for the third wicket after India skipper Virat Kohli put them into bat. But that was brought crumbling down by part-time spinner Kedar Jadhav. In the end, Bangladesh scored 264 with India reaching the target with nine wickets and nearly ten overs to spare.
Mortaza stated that the side needs to improve with the ball on wickets which are not providing much movement or spin for the bowlers. “We have to learn a bit more, how to stop runs on that sort of wicket. We can’t just be hoping to take wickets all the time, especially against a batting order like India. So I know we have to learn a little bit more how can we stop runs and put pressure on the opponent,” he added.
Bangladesh began the tournament with a defeat to England despite scoring 305/6 in the 50 overs. In the subsequent match, they shared a point with Australia due to inclement weather – a result that was more unfortunate for Steve Smith’s side who were in dominant phase. But Bangladesh sprung a surprise to beat New Zealand in the third and final group game to book a place in the knockouts.