Durban: Minnows Bangladesh and Canada find themselves serving up a World Cup dessert at Kingsmead on Tuesday when their day-night clash follows the day's main course of Australia against Pakistan at the Wanderers. Despite their match being very much in the shadow of the giants at Johannesburg, Canada coach Gus Logie believes that his team of bit-part players can rise to the occasion as it features in its first World Cup since 1979.
"We may lack the experience but we have some very good players in the squad and if they follow the basics of sound cricket judgement they will more than hold their own," Logie promised. He said that much would depend on all-rounder John Davison, who has played in South Australia, and others such as spinner Barry Seebaran, Fazal Samad, Ishwar Maraj, a top order batsman from Trinidad, Nick Ifill, also from the West Indies and Ian Billcliff, who has played in New Zealand.
"One thing is certain. We will not be overawed by the occasion of our opening game because we are physically and mentally prepared," the former West Indian Test player told a news agency. Bangladesh finds itself in the unusual position of favourite, which means it has the perfect opportunity to break its embarrassing sequence of 26 successive defeats. Skipper Khaled Mashud believes that if his men bowl with discipline they will be able to contain the Canadians, who made it through to the final by finishing third in the ICC Trophy last year.
"We need to be strong and learn how to win against the better sides but at the same time we will not underestimate the likes of Canada. The World Cup is different in every aspect to every other cricket tournament and that is a lesson to be remembered by one and all," warned Mashud aware of the shock his team caused when it beat Pakistan by 62 runs at the last World Cup.
| Copyright AFP 2001 |