Nigar Sultana Joty: Bangladesh skipper looking forward to World Cup encounter in England

Heading into their first World Cup, Bangladesh have moved up to sixth in the world rankings – ahead of West Indies and Pakistan
Dated: March 26 Time: 22:00 GMT Location: Wellington
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Bangladesh may be at their first Women’s World Cup, but they are keeping their captain’s word that they are there to “compete and not just participate”.

A victory over Pakistan and close contests against South Africa and the West Indies showed that Bangladesh were the surprise of the tournament.

And now Nigar Sultana Joty’s side stand in the way of England, who must win their final group game in Wellington to secure their place in the last four.

Bangladesh led by Joty ‘calm, but sometimes crazy’

Joty, just 24, was at the heart of Bangladesh’s surprise World Cup trip.

She describes her style as captain as “calm, sometimes crazy and sometimes very aggressive”.

England will be wary of this approach. This was evident in the nine-leg victory over Pakistan, in Bangladesh’s second World Cup match only.

“Every time I played against Pakistan it was different,” said Joty, alluding to the historic enmity between the countries. “We were confident against Pakistan, we played against them many times.”

The team felt “shocked and excited” after the win, Joty added.

On the pitch, Bangladesh stuck to a tight line plan with the new ball before applying mid-inning pressure with a range of spin options.

England will have parsed the clumsy re-ball threat posed by Jahanara Alam, complete with a distinctive green headband and blonde streaks.

But it’s in the area of ​​spin that Bangladesh has really excelled.

“Salma (Khatun), Rumana (Ahmed), Fahima (Khatun) and Nahida (Akter) were brilliant against Pakistan,” Joty said.

The four spinners caused a spectacular batting collapse in Pakistan, which saw six wickets dropped for 32 runs.

When the wickets fell against Pakistan and the result was confirmed, Bangladesh caught the attention of the cricketing world with their impromptu and spontaneous celebrations.

“We have been playing together for many years and we want to live every moment because this is our very first World Cup. We are delighted,” said Joty.

“Nahida and Fahima wanted to celebrate in a different way, their style, and I imitated that style.”

In addition to the celebratory dance, a clip on social media of jubilant chants on the team bus was widely shared.

Joty describes the all-rounder Ritu Moni as the team’s joker – “she’s a smiley person and she tries to be funny all the time”.

Joty’s Journey

Joty’s career in professional cricket has mirrored the many challenges that Bangladeshi women face when making their way in the sport.

Negative perceptions about female cricketers are widespread. Joty’s family was initially reluctant about her career choice before realizing how talented she was.

“I used to live in a very small town where it’s very hard for a girl to choose cricket,” she said. “People were saying a lot of negative things, they were saying it wasn’t the right job for a girl.”

It was the support of his “cricket-crazed” family – his mother used to take Joty to training – that allowed his career to flourish.

Interest in women’s cricket continues to grow in Bangladesh. An established structure is in place, incorporating representative teams at Under-17 and Under-19 level.

Joty thinks the future is bright for Bangladesh and although they may not reach the last four when they take to the pitch against England, she hopes such progress is only around the corner. from the street.

“In the next World Cup, I want to see my team in the semi-finals,” she said, adding that she hopes Bangladesh’s performance in the World Cup will encourage more top teams to come. to confront them.

Joty’s only regret is the failure of his team’s hitters to pursue goals against South Africa and the West Indies when properly tuned.

“We didn’t play too many international matches so we couldn’t control the situations,” Joty said.

Judging by their performances in this tournament, experience will come – and few would bet against the women of this cricket-mad country who continue their upward curve.

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