T20 World Cup – Sriram wants Bangladesh’s T20 players to create ‘impact’, not focus on ‘performances’

T20 World Cup - Sriram wants Bangladesh's T20 players to create 'impact', not focus on 'performances'

Bangladesh’s technical consultant Sridharan Sriram believes ‘impact’ in T20 cricket trumps everything else. Even performance.

In his first press conference in Dhaka, Sriram – essentially brought on board for the T20I side – said that he believes a good performance can even be detrimental to a side, unless it has a direct influence on the outcome of a T20 game.

“I am looking for impact, not performance,” Sriram said, just moments after Bangladesh announced their T20 World Cup squad. “Bangladesh will win if seven or eight players make an impact. A 30 or 25, off 17-18 balls is impact for me. A small example of this is the way Mosaddek [Hossain] went after [Wanindu] Hasaranga in the over after Mahmudullah got out [at the Asia Cup]. That’s impact. I think performance is overrated in T20 cricket. A team could still lose if they have performers. But if we have more impact, chances are, we will win more games.”

Sriram said that Bangladesh’s struggles in closing out games from tight situations as an area that needs improvement. In nine T20Is this year, Bangladesh have lost seven matches, following on from doing poorly in the T20 World Cup last year in the UAE. Sriram believes that it could be a lack of skill or mentality, or both, that is holding the team back.

“We want to win critical moments in the game. Bangladesh have lost a lot of close T20 games. The overall results would have looked a lot better had we won half of these games. Why we are losing close games is something I am really keen to understand.

“We need to have critical-moment awareness. If we win small moments, overall we can string those results together. Chances are, we will win close games. It could be skills, execution or it could be mental as well. What is he thinking in those situations? These conversations are ongoing with the leadership group of the team. We do one-on-one and also small groups too,” Sriram said.

Sriram is also keen to work with Bangladesh’s returning batters. Litton Das, Nurul Hasan and Yasir Ali missed the Asia Cup due to injuries, but Sriram believes that they have the right skills to take the team in the right direction come the World Cup.

“Litton Das is an established cricketer and Nurul has good knowledge of his own game,” Sriram said. “I am quite eager to see more of Yasir. He has the power that Bangladesh lacks as a T20 team. Somebody who can clear the ropes and find the boundaries. I think Rabbi [Yasir] is a very exciting prospect.

Sriram shot back at a suggestion that a good performance by Bangladesh in the T20 World Cup, in Australia next month, will give him a contract extension. Rather, he said, that he wanted to focus on the positives from the Asia Cup, where he felt that the team showed fighting qualities despite losing to Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.

“I am not here to extend my contract. I am here to do my job to the best of my ability for the time I am contracted,” Sriram said. “Thinking of an extension is not the right way to operate. I will do the best for Bangladesh. I wear heart and soul for this team.

“There was a huge positive in the way we played in the Asia Cup. We needed to win both games but it doesn’t mean we didn’t play good cricket. I please request everyone not to be results driven. Results are everything in sport but there needs to be a process and plan in place. As long as we have that direction, that’s all I am accountable for.”

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