What's touring the sub-continent *really* like? Behind the scenes with the BLACKCAPS on tour.

Bangladesh and Sri Lanka in pictures

What's touring the sub-continent *really* like? We've all heard about the heat and the humidity on the pitch, but what about some of the stuff you don't get to see in the match coverage? 

In the spirit of 'the best camera you have is the one you have with you', here's a few snaps from the recent tour to give you a feel for life on tour. You can click on all these photos to see them full-size on the BLACKCAPS' Flickr page

Bangladesh

Trent and Doug 50th 
Trent Boult and Doug Bracewell both took their 50th Test wickets in Chittagong in Bangladesh - here they are in the shed with the very match balls they took them with. When bowlers take significant milestones like this, the BLACKCAPS manager Mike Sandle organises for them to keep the match balls as special souvenirs.
BLACKCAPS train under dark skies at Chittagong 
Training facilities in Chittagong. As you can see,  there was a bit of weather about - the day before the Test, there was an almighty downpour, but the drainage was so good there was no delay to the start the next day.
2013-10-09 12.02.10 
You might recognise this Chittagong chap from the TV coverage - we like to think of him as 'Super Bangladesh man'.
2013-10-10 08.37.33
Mark Gillespie mid-facial-hair-rethink. He went from full beard, to this beauty that would make Merv Hughes re-assess his life goals, to clean shaven in one whirlwind day. 
2013-10-18 09.55.08
The two most important people in the BLACKCAPS tour party - Aktar (left) and Abul, our bag men. Not only did they hump the not-inconsiderable piles of gear required by a travelling cricket team like it was nothing, they prepared chilly bin after chilly bin of icy drinks, gave expert massages to the players and basically worked tirelessly to help make sure everyone was comfortable and happy.2013-10-20 14.41.07 
National Academy Ground at Dhaka, where the BLACKCAPS did (some) training. It's right next door to...
2013-10-20 14.39.05 
Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium, Dhaka. There's no doubt it's an impressive arena, and intimidating and loud when it's full. This photo is taken from the outdoor 'overflow' media area on the fourth floor of the media centre.
 
When it rains, it REALLY rains.
2013-10-26 10.41.41 
The outdoor nets at the, erm, indoor training facility, where the BLACKCAPS trained in Dhaka. It was right next door to a noisy road, with traffic going past with associated constant traffic noise.
2013-11-04 08.54.54 
The 360 degree view of Fatullah, scene of the third ODI v Bangladesh just as the home side clinched their win. This match was REALLY loud, with the crowd right on top of the players. 

Sri Lanka

20131113_112914 
First time anyone in the team had been transported by an army plane before! Not surprisingly it didn’t have air-conditioning – hot work.
20131112_165429
The odd rain break gave Tom Latham and Anton Devcich plenty of opportunity to please some of the local fans by signing autographs.
  20131109_094709
This plane trip was a rattler. There were certainly a few sweaty palms during the flight, but everyone is looking much more relaxed after the trip here.
20131113_143653
The boys enjoyed seeing a bit of the Sri Lankan culture, including a special welcome as seen here. Very impressive outfits. 
20131120_160743 
Here's Neil Broom on his 30th birthday with a special cake the hotel made for him - the number wasn't quite right (we hope it was younger Neil!), but reports indicate it tasted great all the same.

Photo credits: Mike Sandle, Callum Elder and Richard Irvine.

With Thanks To

ANZ Ford
Tui Active Post HRV Specsavers CCC
Sky Pitch Radio Network TAB Gillette Accor Hotels City Fitness