New Delhi: Ahead of the first T20I against India, Bangladesh coach Russell Domingo has admitted that the conditions are not ideal in the national capital but said it was the same for both teams and they have got to deal with it.
Delhi has been compared to a gas chamber given its pollution level ever since Diwali. With the weather conditions deteriorating and the air quality index (AQI) 'reaching severe' level on Friday, there has been concerns about the upcoming match in the city.
"The weather has been magnificent. It's not too hot. There's no breeze. But not obviously perfect with the smog. But it's the same for both the teams. It's not perfect, not ideal.
"But we are not really complaining about it," Domingo told reporters at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, the venue for the first T20I of the three-match series.
"We have got to make sure that we prepare as well as possible. We obviously have some scratchy eyes, some sore throats but it's been okay. Nobody is sick or dying.
"We don't want to be in such a weather outside in the field for six or seven hours. Three hours a game we are playing and three hours of practice session," he added.
The Bangladesh coach further said that no special plans or arrangements have been made by them for the players to tackle with the weather conditions on offer in the national capital.
On Thursday, stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma said that he didn't face any problems with the weather conditions in the national capital.
BCCI President Sourav Ganguly had also made it clear that the match cannot be shifted to another venue at the eleventh hour. However, he did mention that in the future, the board will consider the weather conditions before hosting a match in the North in winters.
The visitors were handed with a massive blow earlier in the week with their leading all-rounder Shakib al Hasan getting banned by the ICC for two years after he failed to report corrupt approaches.
Speaking about Shakib's loss, Domingo said: "Last couple of weeks have been difficult. But sometimes things like these get the guys going. The team has been doing fantastic here, they are working really hard. They seem to be happy and enjoying... So, its been a good start to our preparation."
He further said that Shakib will be missed in the T20Is and Test matches. But he added that the loss will provide young players an opportunity to perform and showcase their talent and gather experience against a quality Indian side.
"Anybody will miss Shakib. He is a fantastic cricketer, a world class all-rounder. The players look up to him, so he is obviously a big loss.
"There's no doubt about that. But he's made a mistake and is paying the price for it. Obviously, his loss will affect the team's performance but our job as a coach is to keep the team ready and prepared leading up to the World Cup," he said.
Regular skipper Virat Kohli has been rested for the T20I series. In his absence, Rohit Sharma will lead the hosts.
Speaking about Kohli's absence, Domingo said: "There's no Virat, there's no Shakib. It's an advantage to India with no Shakib and it's advantage to Bangladesh with no Virat. It would have been great if Virat was playing because we want to play against the best players in the world.
"If you ask all the Bangladesh players, they would love to test their skills against Virat. It's disappointing that he is not playing. But we totally understand his workload and the amount of cricket he plays. As a coach, I am glad he is not playing.