Domingo backs BCB’s decision to postpone SL tour

DHAKA – Bangladesh head coach Russell Domingo expressed his disappointment over the postponement of his side’s Sri Lanka tour but still was quite happy not to visit the Island nation, stating that being locked up in the room for 14 days would have been extremely difficult.

A few days ago, the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) postponed the series over the quarantine period issue as Sri Lanka was adamant about that the Tigers would have to spend 14 days at hotel while the visitors wanted seven-day quarantine with practice facilities.

“Obviously I’m very disappointed that the Sri Lanka tour is not taking place. I think the BCB were correct in refraining from going under the stipulations that were placed upon the team,” Domingo said here today during a virtual press conference.

“It would have been very difficult for us to spend that amount of time locked up in our room without preparation and playing a Test match in 10-day time. I am fully supporting the decision.”

By backing BCB’s decision further, Domingo said, the players would have mentally broken down if they stayed quarantine for 14 days in Sri Lanka

“Couple of our players have been in isolation for five or six days. They said it was extremely difficult, in terms of mental aspect,” he said, showing an example.

“Forget about the physical side. For me, personally, to spend 14 days locked up in a small hotel room would be very challenging. I suppose there were some discussions among some players but ultimately it’s a decision the board made.”

He went on to say: “As disappointed that they were to not play the series, the players appreciate the board’s decision. They also understand that the mental issues of being in a locked up, enclosed area for 14 days could pose some serious challenges. Some guys may be able to deal with it but one or two struggling with it, is an issue. Everybody’s feelings have to be considered when making these decisions, and the board made the right decision.”

But postponement of the Sri Lanka series means Bangladesh has no international fixture this year, leaving them a shortage of cricket. However, Domingo is not worried about it, rather he is happy to get some time to work with the players so that their return to International cricket becomes smooth.

He said the decision to start practice, intra-squad match and domestic cricket would help the players to get adjusted with the cricket and thereby would make their return to International cricket smoother.

“However, it does leave us short of international cricket. It has now been nearly seven months since the team played together and after the last Zimbabwe series, we seemed to be making some good strides,” the South African coach said.

“The BCB are doing some domestic leagues. There have been one or two invites from outside nations, maybe to play cricket in December. Nothing has been confirmed as yet. I think rightfully domestic cricket needs to be going. As a coach I prefer guys play domestic cricket first and then go into international cricket. So, if there’s any form of domestic cricket, that’d be first-class,” he remarked.

At the same time, Domingo was pleased with players’ skill and fitness, which they acquired through individual training, organized by the BCB.

“I think we are very fortunate that BCB has done an outstanding job in organising individual training sessions,” he said.

“Guys have been extremely busy in the last three or four months. We have been here now for nearly a month. I am proud of the work that they have done. They seem to be in good physical condition. A lot of players seem to be in good touch in the nets. The bowlers have got themselves fit. Taskin is looking unbelievable. It is exciting.”BSS