Australia leg-spinner Adam Zampa revealed that his team had been wanting to be aggressive against Bangladesh in their Group 1 match at the Dubai International Stadium here on Thursday. He added that past memories of playing against Bangladesh in Dhaka was playing on the minds of the players.
Zampa played an important hand in Australia’s eight-wicket win, with his 5/19 leaving Bangladesh all out for 73. In reply, Australia came out all guns blazing, chasing the target in 6.2 overs. The big win means that Australia are now ahead of South Africa in the Group 1 standings on the basis of net run rate and in the race for the semi-finals with their last league match against West Indies in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.
“Obviously, we wanted to come out really aggressive. We have some interesting memories of the last time we played Bangladesh, and that was in our minds a little bit. So, obviously we have a little bit of a different team, have some really fast bowlers, and we wanted to be aggressive early. We know that if we give a team like Bangladesh a little sniff or a little chance, they’ll take it. They’re a really talented team, have some really dangerous players. Obviously have a pretty big out in terms of Shakib. But we just set about being aggressive, trying to get early wickets, and go from there,” said Zampa in the post-match press conference.
Talking about his spell which left Bangladesh in a spin, Zampa remarked, “It was an interesting one. Obviously, you look at cricket as a results-based game. You see the five wickets. But it wasn’t the best I’ve bowled. But in terms of the situation of our World Cup and how important a big win was, it feels really good to be able to contribute. Obviously to bowl them out for 70-odd and get the runs so quick, gets us up to second on the ladder now. So, it’s a satisfying win, and it was a really important one for us.”
Zampa had almost got his hat-trick if not for keeper Matthew Wade dropping Taskin Ahmed’s catch. But it didn’t affect Australia as Zampa took out the last two wickets with five overs still left in Bangladesh’s innings. “Because I got the two wickets probably three overs before my next ball, I actually didn’t think anyone else knew that I was on a hat trick. Actually, I wanted it that way because I didn’t feel like I wanted the batsman to know, either, in case he tried to slog one or whatever. I said, ‘oh, Wadey, that was my hat trick, mate’. He goes, ‘I know, I tried to catch it for you’. Hence the wry smile. But I’ve never got a hat trick, still haven’t got one, but I couldn’t really blame Wadey too much. He’s been taking some beautiful catches in this World Cup in particular.”
The 29-year-old concluded by saying that his team’s focus now moves to being at their best against West Indies. “I think it’s really important that this West Indies game is the next one on our minds. They’re a really dangerous team, and same as Bangladesh, they played really well against us a few months ago. Yeah, they’re a really dangerous team, really important to win this next one so that we can secure, hopefully secure our place in the finals.”