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Tigers aim to repeat history

Published on: 10:21 pm - Tuesday | September 25, 2018

 

currentnews.com.bd

 

Bangladesh aim to repeat their 2015 history as they take on Pakistan in the crucial sixth super four match of the ACC Asia Cup scheduled to be held tomorrow (Wednesday) at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The match kicks off at 5.30 pm (BST). It will be the must win game for both Bangladesh and Pakistan to secure the semi-final with an aim to set a title clash against India on September 28.

Before the big super four match, Bangladesh can take inspiration of their
sweet memory of whitewashing Pakistan in their home soil backed in 2015. The
Tigers had handed them a 3-0 ODI series whitewash making it first such
instance in Bangladesh cricket.

However, having made 12 appearances in 13 editions of the Asia Cup in 34-
year long history, Bangladesh’s best performance being finishing second in
2012 and 2016 editions.

The Tigers were denied their maiden title by Pakistan in the 2012 edition
in a closely fought final match, missing out by just two runs. It was the
Tiger’s maiden entry to the final. Chasing 237 in the final against Pakistan,
Bangladesh came agonizingly close to the target before finishing at 234.

The 2016 edition was the first to be played in the T20 format where Tigers
were dismissed by India in a rather one-sided finale as India won the title
for the record sixth time.

Both the teams are coming after winning their fixtures against Afghanistan
in a last over thriller after losing against India.

Bangladesh lost their fixture against India. They were outwitted by
comeback man Ravindra Jadeja as he scalped four wickets while Bhuvneshwar and
Bumrah picked three each after Bangladesh were bundled out for 173. Chasing
174 was never going to be tough for the mighty Indian batting line up and the
Indian openers ensured that they finished their chase with ease.

However, Bangladesh’s biggest concern is their batting. Opener Tamim ruled
out of the tournament due to injury problem, Bangladeshi openers have failed
miserably. Star allrounder Shakib Al Hasan also has not lived up to the
expectations. The bowlers too have failed to stifle the scoring.

Experienced Bangladesh old season campaigner Mashrafe Mortaza has been
leaking runs too. He has the highest economy rate than any other bowler in
the tournament. He has conceded 184 runs in his 29 overs in four matches.

Problems are aplenty for Pakistan too as pace spearhead Mohammed Amir, who
seems to have lost sting and is struggling to take wickets, which is his
primary job, and which was reiterated by his skipper Sarfraz Ahmed on the eve
of the group game against India. Sarfraz’s words didn’t have the desired
effect as Amir and Co failed to deliver.

If Bangladesh put up a spirited performance, they might end up being in
the finals this time around also. For this to happen, the senior players like
Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan need to step up.

Probable squads:

Bangladesh: Masrafe Bin Mortaza (captain), Shakib Al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal,
Mohammad Mithun, Litton Kumar Das, Mushfiqur Rahim, Ariful Haque,
Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain Saikat, Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Mehidy Hasan
Miraz, Nazmul Islam Apu, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman and Abu Haider Rony

Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Shan Masood, Sarfraz
Ahmed(captain), Shoaib Malik, Haris Sohail, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz,
Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan, Usman Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Asif Ali
and Mohammad Amir.

 

 

(BSS)
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