Mortaza seeking partnerships against UAE


Bangladesh will be hoping to put a torrid start to the Asia Cup behind them when they take on United Arab Emirates on Friday.

The tournament hosts were batted by India in the opener, losing by 45 runs as Rohit Sharma put on a Twenty20 batting masterclass by making 83 off 55 balls.

But Bangladesh were not without their opportunities as Shakib Al Hasan dropped Rohit in the 11th over.

Captain Mashrafe Mortaza stopped short of blaming Al Hasan for the drop.

"We can't really do much about it. A catch can be missed," he said.

"He is one of our best fielders and I wanted him at point in that over because from the 12th or 13th over in T20s, we usually have most of our better fielders in crucial positions in the deep."

Instead, Mortaza said he would be placing a larger emphasis on batting in partnerships ahead of the team's second game, after openers Soumya Sarkar (11) and Mohammad Mithun (1) were both dismissed cheaply.

Imrul Kayes (14), Shakib (3) and Mushfiqur Rahim (16 not out) managed a collective 33 at number four, five and six respectively and Mortaza said the early wickets hurt Bangladesh's cause.

"We should have had some partnerships going from the start but we also had to consider that in T20s, it becomes harder if we try to build a partnership, particularly in a chase," he said.

"I think something like 15 runs is just a matter of one over but because those early wickets really hurt us. If we had wickets in hand towards the end, 15 or 20 runs in an over would have helped us."

UAE are yet to play their first game since winning the qualifying pool having won all three of their games against Afghanistan, Oman and Hong Kong and take on Sri Lanka in their tournament opener on Thursday.