This is Our Biggest Achievement: Shakib
Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Stand-in-captain Shakib Al Hasan termed Bangladesh's first-ever away series win over West Indies most important achievement since the country gained Test status in 2000.

"In our nine years, this is the biggest thing that has happened to Bangladesh cricket," Shakib was quoted as saying by Cricinfo. "This series victory will give a boost to our confidence, and will help take us to the next level, and with God's help, we shall go forward."

Bangladesh on Monday sealed the away Test series win in Grenada after handing a comprehensive four-wicket defeat to the makeshift West Indies, which also suffered a 95-run loss in the first Test in Kingstown that also allowed the tourists to taste its second Test victory since the lone triumph came against Zimbabwe at home in 2005.

Chasing a 215-winning target on the fourth day, Shakib thought that they really displayed a positive attitude to topple the total as they had been showing consistency since coming to the Caribbean.

"There was not too much pressure on us, since the boys have been playing really, really well and it was a good victory for us," Shakib was quoted.

With Bangladesh tottering at 67-4 at one stage, Shakib took charge to turn the match around with a swashbuckling 96 not out to steer the side home. He was also the pick of the bowlers with eight wickets – five in the West Indies' second innings.
His efforts earned both the man-of-the match and series awards.

He was ably-supported by Raqibul Hasan, who also struck his maiden Test fifty and together they put on 106 runs for the fifth stand to virtually ensure the Tigers were on the verge of an historic victory before being separated.

Shakib said that they were now looking forward to the one-day international series and hoped to keep up the momentum.

West Indies captain Floyd Reifer believed the batting debacle in their second innings was the turning point of defeat as well as the match was a tough one for them.

"We had a good opportunity to win the game in the second innings, but we did not bat too well," Reifer said. "We always knew we needed around 280 runs to have a fighting chance to win the game and we fell way short."

"It is pretty difficult to defend a victory target of 215. All they needed was one good partnership to have a good chance. But I felt [Darren] Sammy bowled well, and our guys tried very hard, but it was a tough game."

Spin accounted for 15 of 20 West Indian wickets in the first Test and 18 in Grenada and Reifer addressed the frailty and Reifer said that the players and coaches would have work to work out the best way to play spin bowling.


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