2019 World Cup: Shakib Al Hasan predicts spin will have a big role
Shakib Al Hasan (left) is confident of Bangladesh's success in England. © Getty

The 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup which is set to get underway in just over a month from now has thrown the spotlight on the pitches that will be on offer. With the tournament in England where surfaces are mostly expected to help the batsmen, veteran allrounder and an integral member of Bangladesh’s World Cup squad Shakib Al Hasan, who by his own admission is “100 per cent fit” and free from all finger injuries, reckons that spin will come into the picture and possibly could be the defining factor as the tournament progresses.

“Spin will play an important role because of the formation of the tournament. It’s a long tournament, some matches are in England, so it’s going to get dry, spinners will play a big part in the World Cup, especially in the later part of the tournament,” Shakib tells CricketCountry.

As a precursor to the World Cup, Bangladesh will be engaged in a tri-series in Ireland, also involving West Indies, which begins on May 7. Shakib was expected to arrive back home on April 23 to join the team’s pre-season training camp, but with the departure of Jonny Bairstow from the IPL, an opportunity has opened up with Sunrisers Hyderabad.

READ: Cricket World Cup 2019: Full list of 10 squads

Shakib is now expected to link to link up with the Bangladesh team just ahead of their departure for Ireland on May 1.

“I am doing everything that I could do to prepare myself for the World Cup,” says Shakib, who this IPL has played only two of SRH’s 10 matches. “I need to play a few more matches which would be helpful for me, but I am giving my best as far as the preparations are concerned. I can train back in Bangladesh, but I am doing the same training here in the IPL.

READ: Important to use Mustafizur carefully ahead of World Cup: Courtney Walsh

“It was going to be tough this year for me to play a lot of matches because the strength of our squad was good, and I knew that I will not be able to play a lot of matches. Add to that, all the overseas players performed, so I had to understand that, but I knew that when I get my opportunity, I had to make sure that I had to contribute for the team.”

 

Shakib Al Hasan, Sunrisers Hyderabad, IPL 2019, Bangladesh, ICC World Cup 2019
Shakib Al Hasan is expected to link up with Bangladesh on May 1. © BCCI

At the 2015 World Cup, Bangladesh reached the quarter-finals. Shakib, the second highest ranked allrounder in Test, ODI and Twenty20 cricket, believes that they s been improving side with each year and although there will be expectations, he advised his team-mates to be patient.

READ: Bangladesh include uncapped Jayed in strong World Cup squad, Shakib named vice-captain

“Yes, there are expectations and there will always be expectations. As a professional player, you need to understand those expectations and you need to handle them with care. Bangladesh have been improving a lot. We are doing the right things and we just need to be patient during the tournament,” the vice-captain, who pitted England as favourites to win the tournament, explains.

Bangladesh begin their World Cup campaign against South Africa at the Oval on June 2.

Bangladesh’s World Cup squad: Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Soumya Sarkar, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah, Shakib Al Hasan (v/c), Mohammad Mithun, Sabbir Rahman, Mosaddek Hossain, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mehidy Hasan, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Abu Jayed