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Bangladesh coach Jamie Siddons expects captain and allrounder Shakib al Hasan (pictured) to do well.


Two years ago Bangladesh had a whiff of the babes in the cricket woods about them during their New Zealand tour.
Not any more, according to their Australian coach Jamie Siddons, who is expecting them to be far more assertive this time around, starting with the solitary Twenty20 international at Hamilton tomorrow night.
In 2007-08, Bangladesh had moments to savour, but not enough and were outplayed 3-0 in the ODI series and comfortably in both tests.
Much of the personnel remain the same, but there has been development and it's paying dividends, Siddons said.
Now there are several top quality players and the self-belief is on the rise.
"The aim is to try and produce some world-class cricketers and back then I didn't think we had anyone who could walk out and succeed," Siddons said yesterday.
"Now there's three or four guys who every time they go out expect to do well."
He cited captain and allrounder Shakib al Hasan, 20-year-old left-hand opener Tamim Iqbal, 21-year-old wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim - straight off his maiden test hundred against India last month - and talented but frustratingly inconsistent Mohammad Ashraful as players who can stand tall in top company.
Throw in lively young seamer Shahadat Hossain, who created a favourable impression on that last tour, and things are looking up for the least experienced of the nine test nations.
Tamim's 151 against India at Dhaka a few days ago - averaging 58 over the two tests - spoke eloquently of his promise. He marked his test debut at University Oval in Dunedin with two half centuries in 2008 and has stepped up from there.
There was a suspicion that part of Bangladesh's problem in pursuing improvement was that they felt weighed down by the number of substantial defeats. They were becoming accustomed to losing and didn't feel the hurt that should have accompanied repeatedly coming second.
Siddons has a slightly different perspective.
"It was more that when you're getting beaten all the time it's hard to believe in yourselves. It wasn't that they weren't caring, but they didn't believe they could do any better. That was the hard part.
"This team is nothing like that. This team expects to win and perform and I expect them to play well in this series."

Source: nzherald.co.nz
Date: Tuesday Feb 2, 2010

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