Bangladesh look to overturn form against India
Bangladesh will face India in the three-match ODI series, starting from December 04 in Mirpur. The first two matches of the series will be played at the Shere Bangla National Stadium whereas the last fixture will be played at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram.
The series will be the beginning of India’s tour of Bangladesh which also comprised two Test matches, starting from December 14.
Both teams have played 36 times in the history of the 50-over format where the Men-in-Blue have a clear with 30 wins compared to the Tigers’ five victories whereas one match ended without a result.
Surprisingly, 22 out of those 36 meetings came on Bangladesh soil where the home team emerged victorious on four occasions, and suffered 17 defeats whereas one match ended without a result.
Bangladesh will be entering the series low on confidence, despite winning eight out of 12 matches in the 50-over played by the side this year.
The primary reason is the team’s overall performance over the last few months where they have looked lack -lustered, against some of the teams who are not even amongst the best in the world.
One of the areas Bangladesh have struggled massively is finishing the game, both while batting and bowling.
To address that issue, the selectors have picked a strong squad comprised of all the senior pros which will give the fans a lot of reasons to be optimistic about the team’s prospects in the upcoming series.
In the batting department, the onus will be on the likes of captain Tamim Iqbal, in-form Litton Das and veteran trio of Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah and Mushfiqur Rahim to score the bulk of the runs and give the bowlers something substantial to defend.
On the bowling front, the onus will be on the likes of pacers Mustafizur Rahman, in-form Taskin Ahmed, Ebadot Hossain along with the spin trio of Shakib, Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Nasum Ahmed to restrict the visitors by claiming timely breakthroughs.
On the other hand, team India will be looking to use this series as a starting point for the preparation of the next International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup which is set to be organised in about 10 months.
This year, the Men-in-Blue have been in very impressive form in the 50-over format where they have already won 13 out of 19 matches, most by any team playing the format in the international arena.
Despite those numbers, all is not well inside the Indian camp as criticism is growing from the fans as well as ex-players about the team’s performance in the mega-events where the side have been struggling since reaching the final of the ICC T20 World Cup back in 2014.
Therefore, it is pretty clear why the selectors announced a full squad for the three-match series to get an idea about which players are worthy of more investment ahead of the big competition in home conditions just a few months later.
The four major absentees from the squad are star pacers Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar veteran Ravindra Jadeja and all-rounder Hardik Pandya.
Out of the three mentioned above, the first two will miss the series as they continue to recover from their respective injuries whereas Pandya has been given some break. It will be interesting to see how the team will cope in the presence of these three star players.
In the batting department, the onus will be once again on the likes of captain Rohit Sharma, star batter Virat Kohli, KL Rahul and left-hander Shikhar Dhawan to score the bulk of the runs and put the opposition under pressure, especially when the side knows fully well that they are struggling in the bowling department.
One position remains up for grab in the side with wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant struggling to put any sort of runs on the board and therefore, it will be a tricky call for the management to either persist with the left-hander or give a chance to someone like Ishan Kishan.
As with the ball in hand, the visitors will be heavily relying on the likes of pacers Mohammad Shami, Mohammad Siraj, Deepak Chahar and Shardul Thakur to claim timely breakthroughs for the side.
They will be accompanied by a spin trio of Axar Patel, Shahbaz Ahmed and Washington Sundar to claim timely breakthroughs.
Both teams are coming into the series with contrasting performances in the recent past. India will be without some key players who are either struggling with injuries or are rested after a busy season.
Despite that, looking at Bangladesh’s recent form across different formats, it is hard to back them against a mighty Indian team who still have some quality players in their ranks.
Therefore, the prediction is for India to secure a 3-0 win against Bangladesh in the ODI series.