Australia go for defensive strategy against Tigers

Dhaka,  Tue,  26 September 2017
Published : 23 Aug 2017, 21:59:55
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Australia go for defensive strategy against Tigers

Australia's batsmen are putting great emphasis on their defensive game in the lead-up to the two Tests against Bangladesh, so much that even a batsman as aggressive as Glenn Maxwell wants to first make sure his block is in perfect order, reports ESPNcricinfo.

The decision was made in the expectation that Bangladesh's bowlers will attack by bowling a stump-to-stump line and, to counter it, Australia have begun batting in the nets without their front pad on. It is a tactic they had experimented with during Justin Langer's tenure as batting coach in 2012.

"I think the main thing is to basically use your bat," Maxwell explained. "If you don't have the safety of your front pad, it makes you get your leg out of the way and actually use your bat. I think it is more about refining your defence and making sure you trust the fact that you can hit the ball and not hoping that your pads are there just to save you.

"It is more about guys who are hitting the stumps regularly and Bangladesh do that really well. They bowl stump to stump and put pressure on your defence so I suppose that's one thing we will work on. I did a lot of it back home. A lot of my practice revolves around defence and expanding from there. I haven't done so much of it since I have been here but I am sure I will get a chance before the game starts."

Maxwell said Australia will be wary of Mustafizur Rahman and Shakib Al Hasan. He had a chance to analyse Mustafizur at the Indian Premier League in 2016 and believes that despite the drop in pace, the young bowler remains one to watch.

"Mustafizur is obviously the exceptional bowler we faced during the IPL during his breakthrough season. I suppose his pace dropped off as he played a bit more Test cricket. He is still an outstanding bowler who has the ability to swing it and has an unbelievable change-up slower ball.

"He is not your conventional left-arm seamer. He is obviously got a very flexible wrist with which he can flick it in the last moment. It looks exactly the same either it is his bumper or his slower ball. It is a hard thing to pick up.
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