Kolkata: Bangladesh will be turning out at the hallowed Eden Gardens for the first time after 26 years, and an excited skipper Mashrafe Mortaza today said the 'Tigers' want to make it a "memorable" outing when they face Pakistan in a Super 10 match of ICC World T20 on Wednesday.
"There're a few grounds where a player always wants to play and do well. Like the Lord's, MCG, Eden Gardens, Mirpur has always been special (for us). It's a big opportunity for us to play at Eden Gardens," Mortaza said on the eve of the match.
"We are all are very excited. It's one of the biggest venues in the world. We want to do well and make it memorable," he said about Eden Gardens where Bangladesh last played way back in December 1990 in an Asia Cup match against Sri Lanka.
"We never played here. As a child we heard a lot about Eden Gardens. It looks more marvellous. We want to make it memorable," he added.
Mortaza said ace all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, who plays for Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL, is one cricketer on whom they can bank upon to gain knowledge about the conditions here.
"Shakib is a very important player for us for last 7-8 years. He's always special. We will get help from him in getting information (about conditions)," the Bangladesh captain said.
Bangladesh, who entered the quarterfinals of the 2015 ODI World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, have improved on their record in Twenty20 Internationals. They recently made it to the final of the Asia Cup and also qualified for the main draw here from a relatively tough group featuring the Netherlands, Oman and Ireland in Dharamsala.
Bangladesh join former champions India, Pakistan along with Australia and New Zealand in a tough group in the main round of the ongoing mega-event.
"It felt like Irish conditions in Dharamsala and it was tough for the group. We're almost in the group of death here. All the other four teams are fancied to win the tournament. So it's a difficult task," Mortaza said.
"We are thinking of the first match and will go match by match. If we do well tomorrow then we will think beyond."
"Obviously there's a bit of confidence having played is good ODI cricket in the last one-and-a-half years. But T20 has always been difficult for us. But we've been doing well in the last three four weeks in T20s. Confidence is there and we want to make it count," he said.
Asked about the availability of left-arm pacer Mustafizur Rahman, who is recovering from a side strain, Mortaza said, "We can't say he will be available. He is feeling well. We have 24 hours to assess his condition. The physio and coach will take a decision."
Bangladesh had beaten Pakistan less than a fortnight ago back home to make the Asia Cup final but Mortaza refused to look back at the past.
"If you go by history, Pakistan are much better. I don't think about past. We are focusing on how to get a good start tomorrow. We will give our best," Mortaza said.
"History says they are a much better side but if we play the way we have been playing it would be a good match for us."
"Pakistan have more experience than us. We have had a good Asia Cup. We got some exciting players."
Published Date: Mar 15, 2016 08:15 pm | Updated Date: Mar 15, 2016 08:15 pm