Highly rated Bangladeshi all-rounder Shakib al Hasan will be eyeing big runs when the unbeaten Barbados Tridents do battle with St Lucia Zouks in their fourth match of the Limacol Caribbean Premier League on Thursday night at the Beausejour Cricket Ground.
Despite his impressive form with the ball, the 26-year-old has struggled with the bat with disappointing scores of 1, 1 and 5, from his three innings to date and says he is anxious to change this worrying trend.
“I’m desperate to score some runs for the team. If you told me I could take five wickets or score a hundred, I would take the hundred any day,” Shakib said.
“I am more satisfied getting runs than wickets. I am an all-rounder but I always prefer batting. I always prefer scoring runs more than my bowling so I am more desperate than anyone else right now I guess.”
Shakib took centre stage during the Tridents’ last outing on Saturday at Kensington Oval, grabbing six wickets for six runs from four overs, as the hosts defeated Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel by four wickets, to claim their third straight win.
However, with Tridents chasing a paltry 53 for victory, Shakib managed just one run before playing on to a quick one from fired up pacer Fidel Edwards.
“In that situation I needed to bat. The plan was to see off Fidel because he was getting wickets and I played a rash shot,” he recalled. “I could have left that ball easily because we were not chasing 150, 160 runs so I was frustrated with myself, not anything else.”
Shakib’s figures in that game were the second best in T20 cricket, and took his tally of wickets in the tournament to seven. The performance also earned him Man-of-the-Match honours for the second straight game.
“I guess I was a bit lucky because you can’t get six wickets every day in a T20 game,” said Shakib, who is perched in the top five of the ICC all-rounders rankings in all three formats of the game.
“Bowling four overs, getting six wickets, once in a blue moon you may get it but I’ll take it. I thought I bowled in good areas, the wicket helped a bit and we took our chances and didn’t drop many.”
Tridents opened their campaign with a 17-run victory over the Zouks, followed up with a 12-run verdict over Antigua Hawksbills, before registering a nervy four-wicket win over Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel.
And with all three games of the Barbados leg played before full houses, Shakib is hoping this trend continues for the remaining fixtures in the Limacol CPL.
“I’m very excited from what I am seeing in these games. The crowd has been turning out in very big numbers and that’s the main thing,” he pointed out.
“When there is no crowd in the ground for international cricket it doesn’t look like international cricket, so the crowd has been the most important thing. All three games we played were before packed houses and we’re expecting the same in the other islands as well.”
The inaugural Limacol CPL features six franchises – Antigua Hawksbills, Barbados Tridents, Guyana Amazon Warriors, Jamaica Tallawahs, St Lucia Zouks and Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel – clashing in 24 matches between 30th July and 24th August.