Felt isolation would be a lot harder but we`ve managed: Tamim
Published: 10:48 PM, 1 March 2021
Bangladesh ODI skipper Tamim Iqbal
Bangladesh ODI skipper Tamim Iqbal said that he is confident that they will be ready as a team by the time they start their campaign in New Zealand, with an eye on rewriting history.
Bangladesh have lost 13 ODIs and four T20Is that they played so far in New Zealand ahead of this upcoming white-ball series, comprising three ODIs and as many T20Is.
Bangladesh reached New Zealand on February 24 and have started their 14-day quarantine at Christchurch's Chateau on the Park, a government authorised quarantine center.
Bangladesh cricketers are following the COVID-19 guidelines sent by New Zealand Cricket, according to which the visitors were confined to their rooms for the first three days and later allowed to walk inside the premises maintaining distance. Bangladesh are expected to start their training from March 4, subject to clearing the COVID tests.
According to NZC's guidelines, the visitors will be allowed to train in groups of five after seven days, before resuming the full-fledged practice regime after the competition of the 14-day period. The tourists are expected to have a five-day training camp in Queenstown following the mandatory quarantine.
"This is my first overseas tour as a skipper. So I am hopeful and by the time the first ODI starts, we will be ready as a team," Tamim said on Monday (March 1). "I have talked to the players and everyone really wants to do well. So we are optimistic and I always have the belief that if we all can execute our plans and play as a group, we have the capability to beat any team. Not only just me but the whole team believes the same.
"I think the first one or two sessions will be difficult as we had very minimum movements. But I think it will be alright after that. If everything goes right, we may start gym sessions from the day after tomorrow. Hopefully, there will be no problem.
"If all of us test COVID-19 negative tomorrow, then we may start using the gym from the day after tomorrow. There are two gyms here and we can use that in different groups. If everything goes right, we will be able to start practicing as small groups from day 8, when we can practice in the field. We are desperately looking forward to it as it feels like we are out of cricket for a while."
Tamim echoed the same sentiment as his teammate Mehedy Hasan on the difficulty of the bio-bubble life.
"Actually it was a strange feeling when we went out for the first time, for fresh air. We were only in the rooms for the first 2-3 days. Suddenly we were allowed to go out, and it felt like we are seeing each other after a long time. As we have separate groups, there are many teammates who haven't seen for the last five days... It's different and challenging but it is finishing somehow.
"Self-isolation was difficult and it is still going on. To be honest, I felt that it would be a lot harder but somehow we have managed to pass our time. There are few more days and hopefully, it will finish soon."
The series was earlier pushed back by a week due to the ongoing challenges in the COVID-19 environment. The three ODIs will now be held on March 20, 23 and 26 in Dunedin, Christchurch and Wellington respectively while the three T20Is will take place on March 28, 30 and April 1 in Hamilton, Napier and Auckland respectively.