Asia Cup: Bangladesh coach fires with reply to Dasun Shanaka’s controversial statement

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As Bangladesh and Sri Lanka take the fight in a practically knockout match in Dubai on Thursday night, as the Group B of the Asia Cup 2022 is set for an exciting conclusion. The victor of the game will advance to the Super Four stage of the continental championship. Both teams lost their respective matches against Afghanistan. But even before the match, tensions erupted in the Bangladesh dugout over a remark made by the captain of Sri Lanka, Dasun Shanaka, before the match.

Shanaka had asserted that Bangladesh would be a “easier opponent” for his team after the team’s defeat to Afghanistan, claiming they only have two world-class bowlers in their squad.

“Afghanistan has a world-class bowling attack. We know Fizz (Mustafizur Rahman) is a good bowler. Shakib is a world-class bowler. But apart from them, there is no world-class bowler in the side. So if we compare with Afghanistan, Bangladesh is an easier opponent,” Shanaka had said.

Khaled Mahmud, the team director for Bangladesh, was questioned about Shanaka’s statement on his team before their match against Sri Lanka. The former captain of Bangladesh didn’t hold back when he said that Sri Lanka has “no great bowlers” at all.

“I don’t know why [Sri Lanka skipper] Dasun Shanaka said such a thing. I heard that he said Bangladesh do not have [world class] bowlers except Shakib and Mustafizur. In fact, I do not see a single [world class] bowler in the Sri Lankan side,” Mahmud, who is with the Bangladesh side in the UAE, said during a press conference on Wednesday.

“At least we have two [world class] bowlers. They do not even have anyone of the quality of Shakib and Mustafizur in their side,” Mahmud added.

“Afghanistan has a world-class bowling attack. We know Fizz [Mustafizur Rahman] is a good bowler. Shakib [al Hasan] is a world-class bowler. But apart from them, there is no world-class bowler on the side. So if we compare with Afghanistan, Bangladesh is an easier opponent,” Sri Lanka captain said after the defeat against Afghanistan.