Bangladesh v India, Asia Cup 2016, final, Mirpur March 5, 2016

Bangladesh hopeful of Shakib's fitness for final


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'Still room for improvement in T20Is' - Mashrafe

The Bangladesh team management is hopeful Shakib Al Hasan will be fit for the Asia Cup final against India on Sunday after the allrounder suffered a blow on his right thigh while batting in the nets on Friday. The team physio, Bayejidul Islam Khan, said Shakib had suffered bruising on the hip flexor near the thigh muscle.

Shakib batted in the nets during an optional training session at the Shere Bangla National Stadium on Saturday before returning to the dressing room. Bayejidul said an injury of this kind normally takes 48 hours to heal and is hopeful this will be the case with Shakib.

"Shakib got this injury during training on Friday," Bayejidul said. "We call it a contusion, after he was struck on the hip flexor of his thigh muscle. He is quite well now. It was optional training today and we had asked him not to train. But he still went at it for a while though he didn't practice much. He will recover before tomorrow's match. Normally it takes 48 hours to recover, and we are hoping that it is the case."

Bangladesh have bigger worries ahead of the final, particularly India's batting line-up. In the league-stage match, Bangladesh managed to put them under pressure in the first seven overs but late-hitting from Rohit Sharma and Hardik Pandya got India back in the game and they eventually won by 45 runs.

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza said the team would focus on curbing runs in the Powerplay and slog overs, when the likes of Rohit and MS Dhoni can do maximum damage.

"There is no doubt that India's batting order has six world-class batsmen in all formats," Mashrafe said. "You can't get them out thinking of a particular way or area. You need to bowl well throughout; they will charge, but you have to minimize that. In this format generally the damage happens in the first six overs and towards the end so we have to keep an eye on those two periods."

Mashrafe said that Mustafizur Rahman, who was ruled out due to a side strain, will be sorely missed but was pleased that Taskin Ahmed and Al-Amin Hossain had taken up the responsibility well, as was evident against Pakistan.

"We are playing without our best bowler [Mustafizur Rahman] to be honest but Taskin and Al-Amin bowled well in the last game," Mashrafe said. "This is a good sign for a team that's growing. When your best payer isn't there still you are performing. This is a good sign."

Mashrafe admitted the side was missing a big-hitter down the order, to back up a strong top and middle-order: "I do believe we have some good players like Tamim, Soumya, Sabbir, Shakib and Mushfiqur. They can change the game for us, I do believe.

"Obviously in T20, I feel there is another area that the game can change and that's the batsman at No 7 or 8. We don't have a world-class player there at the moment but we have some of those in the rest of the batting order."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

Comments have now been closed for this article

  •   Mydul Islam Shoshi on March 6, 2016, 10:42 GMT

    Today special day for Bangladesh I hope Bangladesh must win this final match.

  • Ashqar on March 6, 2016, 7:54 GMT

    honest statement from Mash...India is the best right now both batting and bowling...Hope Ban will try their best...At least we need to see a nail biting fight against the big does not matter...

  • Sharmin on March 6, 2016, 4:57 GMT

    I don't think that Mustafizur is any longer a threat. In the last T20 in a green pitch, India took 40 runs from his 4 overs. But I certainly feel like Taskin is a very good bowler. Always he had great success against India and others in the subcontinent.

  • SheikhQ on March 5, 2016, 23:14 GMT

    A true gentleman! Go ahead Mashrafee, get the Aisa cup for us.

  • M.G. on March 5, 2016, 20:34 GMT

    Bring in Nasir in the late hitting position of #7/ #8 and the problem is solved... Go Tigers

  • Amir on March 5, 2016, 18:35 GMT

    IN is a very strong team and their top order is in good form. BD has to play extremely well to beat IN. All players have to contribute. IN is the prohibitive favourite. Go Tigers!

  • Mahmood on March 5, 2016, 17:56 GMT

    I'm pleased to see a full strength Indian team. A lot will depend on Shakib , Tamim and Mushfiq because they are the most experienced players in the team. All the best to both teams.

  •   Tanveer Khan on March 5, 2016, 17:23 GMT

    Let the best team win. Go Bangladesh, India. Condolences to SL and PAK fans. These two are the best subcontinent teams at the moment.

  • Adam on March 5, 2016, 17:08 GMT

    @BMIKE, yes very much.. the same four that played against India in 2011 n 2015 world is history..!!

  • Deepan Sathyamoorthy on March 5, 2016, 16:29 GMT

    I miss Pakistan in the final. Would have been a very tight hard fought contest. Don't think Bangladesh could give a fight. It is going to be a one sided match with yet another win for India. Bangladeshi fans r putting so much pressure on their team n expecting their team to win hands down. Indian team looks very formidable in T20 format in all conditions with addition of some exciting young n old talented multi-skilled impact players. Any how all d best to Bangladesh team and prayers for shakib to recover on time for the final.

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