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Smith hopes the student becomes the master

Cricket

Bangladesh boast one of Steve Smith’s mentors amongst their ranks as they plot to end Australia’s hopes of winning the World Twenty20.

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Chandika Hathurusingha worked at Cricket NSW from 2011 until he was named Bangladesh’s coach in 2014.

Hathurusingha was an assistant coach of NSW, and served as caretaker coach of the side when Anthony Stuart was sacked in 2012.

The man who played 26 Tests for Sri Lanka worked closely with Smith, Usman Khawaja and Peter Nevill in that stint.

“He knows all of the Australian players because he was coaching with NSW. Obviously we can take so many things from him,” Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza said.

“We know these guys can destroy anything… yes, the coach will help us, but the main thing is we have to execute on the field.”

Smith believes Bangladesh has become a far more competitive outfit since Hathurusingha was poached from Cricket NSW.

“He had a good little influence on me when he was at NSW,” Smith said on the eve of his side’s clash with Bangladesh, a match they must win to keep their T20 title hopes alive.

“He reads the game really well and understands batting really well and taught me a few things… he’s a very good coach.

“He was really good in the time he had at NSW and obviously done well to get an international job at Bangladesh.

“He’s had a bit of success since he got there, which is great.”

Smith noted his side wouldn’t be taking the minnows lightly.

“They’ve improved a lot over the last couple of years and it’s going to be a big challenge for us,” he said.

The match starts at 12.30am ACDT.

Mortaza suggested his team was “very upset” with the decision to suspend paceman Taskin Ahmed and offspinner Arafat Sunny because of illegal actions.

But Smith tipped Bangladesh would find a way to cover their absence.

“They’ve still got some quality bowlers in their line-up. We don’t take any side lightly. For us, it’s about making sure we do well what we do well,” Smith said.

“If we do that, hopefully we’ll have some success.”

-AAP

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