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Last Updated: Saturday, 28 May, 2005, 12:21 GMT 13:21 UK
Bangladesh fail to help themselves
Jonathan Agnew
By Jonathan Agnew
BBC cricket correspondent at Lord's

Not many members of cricket's travelling circus will journey north for the second Test against Bangladesh to Chester-le-Street with any great relish.

Steve Harmison
Harmison is still some distance away from the match-winner that played such a huge role in England successes against West Indies
This has nothing to do with what is always the warmest of welcomes in the north east, but merely because everyone knows what lies in store.

Top class sport needs cut and thrust: Test matches, played over five days, ebb and flow. Bangladesh simply cannot supply what is needed to provide a contest.

The England players will feel this too.

They showed genuine professionalism - and, I thought, a generous measure of respect for their opponents - as they completed the third largest victory in English cricket history.

If they are honest, though, they would much prefer to be facing Australia, with all the perils that entails, rather than picking up easy runs and wickets against Bangladesh.

It is for the tourists to make amends and show some fight.

It is one thing not to be technically good enough to make a fist of it at this level, but there are many things you can do to help yourself.

Gifting your wicket through impulsive rushes of blood is something that should be controllable.

Dav Whatmore - Bangladesh's long-suffering coach - has lost count of the times he has urged his young charges to show some responsibility.

Khaled Mashud
Khaled Mashud showed up Bangladesh's top order
Khaled Mashud, who top scored with 44 on Saturday, showed exactly the right approach.

Hopefully he will thoroughly have ashamed his reckless team-mates who were watching from the dressing room. He batted bravely and, importantly, within his limitations.

Even the number 10, Anwar Hossain Monir, tried his best as the pair put on 58 runs together. It just shows what can be done with just a little discipline.

England's second innings bowling performance was an improvement on the first.

Matthew Hoggard and Simon Jones plugged manfully away into a strong wind, but there will still be concerns about Steve Harmison's form.

These are early days in this very important summer, and the tall fast bowler looked happier than he did in South Africa.

But he is still some distance away from the match-winner that played such a huge role in England successes against West Indies last year.

And it seems inconceivable that England could regain the Ashes without Harmison at his very best.




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