Dhaka, Bangladesh
Tigers to battle for averting all-whitewash tour

BD-NZ final Test tomorrow

Tigers to battle for averting all-whitewash tour

Tiger fans are hoping that Bangladesh would leave no stone unturned to end a disappointing New Zealand tour with some solace as they take on the hosts in the third and final Test at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Saturday, report agencies. The match kicks-off at 4AM (Bangladesh time). The visitors had already conceded the series by losing the first two Tests, both by an innings margin after being whitewashed in the three-match ODI series. The batsman failed to put up any significant resistance in the face of short ball barrage of the Kiwis bowlers, paving the way of the two ignominious defeats. In the first Test, they lost by an innings and 52-run margin while they tasted an innings 12-run margin defeat in the second Test, inside three days. The first two days of the second Test in Wellington was washed out due to heavy rain. Mahmudullah Riyad, who is leading the side in absence of Shakib Al Hasan, termed the defeat in the second Test as a very disappointing, considering the fact they had the chance to save the Test after the rain shortened the game. But the Bangladeshi batsman, apart from Mahmudullah himself and opener Tamim Iqbal, looked clueless against the short balls of Neil Wagener and Trent Boult. However the stand in captain urged to show guts in the third Test as they are on the brink of tasting another whitewash. A defeat in the third Test means Bangladesh will end another New Zealand series without any victory. Bangladesh indeed has never won any match in any format of cricket at New Zealand's own backyard since touring the country in 2001. "We have to bat with more guts for longer periods," interim skipper Mahmudullah said on Tuesday following the defeat in second Test in Wellington. "A number of our batsmen are playing half-hearted shots, or we are not committed. We are in two minds whether to play a shot or not. You need to back yourself. If you want to attack, you should know how you want to cope with their bouncer theory," he added. What would hurt Bangladesh that they got a good start from their openers in all two Test matches as they put on 50 plus partnership in the first three innings of two Tests, something which no other earlier Bangladesh team has done since South Africa in 1999. But the middle order and the tail so far has ruined the positive efforts of the openers. "In the first innings, Tamim and Shadman gave us a good start and even after Wagner started with his bouncer theory, we were handling him well but then we gave it away," he said. Bangladesh's struggling middle order however will be bolstered by the return of Mushfiqur Rahim who had good track record against New Zealand at least in the Test cricket. Team's manager Khaled Masud Pilot said Mushfiqur Rahim started batting and felt no pain, which made him all set to return to the fold as Bangladesh are seeking to avoid the total 'Kiwi Wash'. Meanwhile, Bangladesh have already lost the three-match Test series against New Zealand with one match to play. In the first two matches, they were poor with both of the batting and bowling in the middle which resulted in two innings defeats in two games against the hosts. However, Abu Jayed Rahi, the right-arm pacer of Bangladesh, on Thursday said he is upbeat about doing well after finding a way to swing the ball in the condition of New Zealand. "We saw that we were able to swing the ball in this sort of condition in New Zealand more than we do in Bangladesh. It is helping us earn more self-belief. We also have seen that the batsmen of the opponent are finding it difficult to trade with our swinging deliveries," Abu Jayed said on Thursday while talking to the media. The third Test of the series will take place in Christchurch from March 16. Bangladesh have already reached the city and started gearing up ahead of the third and final Test. In the second Test in Wellington, two catches of Ross Taylor were dropped by Mahmudullah Riyad and Shadman Islam in the same over of Abu Jayed Rahi. After getting those chances, Taylor ended up with a double century which paved the way for New Zealand to secure the match inside three days. "Probably, it was not written in my fate. But we still have one match to play. We are upbeat to do well in the last match. We have developed a belief of swinging the ball," the right-arm pacer further said. Bangladesh are playing the series with four pacers. Mustafizur Rahman, the left-arm pacers, is the most experienced among them with 13 Tests to his name. The other three- Abu Jayed Rahi, Khaled Ahmed and Ebadat - just played nine Tests together. This inexperienced bowling attack was the biggest reason behind Bangladesh's poor performance in the ongoing series.

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