Bangladesh v Zimbabwe, 1st ODI, Mirpur

High-flying Bangladesh seek to extend home run

The Preview by Nitin Sundar

November 30, 2010

Comments: 24 | Text size: A | A

Match Facts

Wednesday, December 1
Start time 09:00 (03:00 GMT)


Brendan Taylor drives through mid on, Zimbabwe v Sri Lanka, Tri-Series, 6th match, Harare, June 7, 2010
Brendan Taylor's inventiveness at the top could determine whether Zimbabwe can stretch Bangladesh © AFP
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The Big Picture

With the World Cup round the corner, the cricketing world has its collective eye trained on Bangladesh. By thumping New Zealand 4-0 at home, they have announced themselves as a real threat to the teams in Group B, who will all have to find a way past their spinners in slow and low conditions. The upcoming series against Zimbabwe may not say much about Bangladesh's development as a cricketing force; they are overwhelming favourites to put it past a side they have bossed in recent times. It will, however, offer some indication about what to expect from the Mirpur and Chittagong tracks that will host the five matches, and all of Bangladesh's World Cup league fixtures and quarterfinal, if they make it that far.

Zimbabwe's supporters will look forward to a better show than New Zealand's. As West Indies and India found out on a couple of occasions earlier in the year, Zimbabwe's spinners are capable of pulling off the strangling act. Ray Price's return after missing the South Africa series, and the presence of Graeme Cremer and Prosper Utseya gives them a spin attack that can compete on level terms with the hosts. Add the inventiveness of Brendan Taylor and co. at the top, and Zimbabwe will entertain thoughts of stretching the hosts in the next couple of weeks.

Mashrafe Mortaza and Tamim Iqbal return to the fold, making Bangladesh even more formidable, on paper, than they were against New Zealand. It's not often that they go into a series as favourites, and having their feet in the ground will be the biggest challenge for Shakib Al Hasan's side.

Form guide

(most recent first)

Bangladesh: WWWWL
Zimbabwe: LLLLLW

Watch out for...

Tamim Iqbal will be itching to hit the ground running after missing in action with an injury to his left wrist and the subsequent surgery. Being a batsman who scores heavily square of the wicket on both sides, Tamim's method will require the wrist to be in good shape. Prior to the injury he was in sublime form across formats, muscling his way to the Wisden Cricketer's Test Player of the Year award. Bangladesh will hope that he has retained his touch through the break.

In his last 11 innings, Brendan Taylor has slammed 578 runs including two unbeaten tons and three other scores in excess of 70. His aggressive style, aided by Chamu Chibhabha and Tatenda Taibu, will seek to dictate terms before Shakib plays the spin card. Can Bangladesh's seamers nip Taylor's attack in the bud? If they don't, his tussle with the spinners could make for some interesting viewing.

Pitch and conditions

Expect the Shere Bangla Stadium to play true to character. In day matches, scores of around 220 have in general proved to be competitive, so the key for the batsmen will be to avoid over-reaching. The early morning start in comparatively cooler climes could interest the likes of Mortaza, but the course of the match could be decided by the slow turn on offer as the game wears on.

Teams

Tamim returns to join Imrul Kayes at the top of the order for the hosts. Mohammad Ashraful is back in the mix; will he find a place in the starting XI?

Bangladesh (probable): 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Imrul Kayes, 3 Junaid Siddique, 4 Raqibul Hasan / Mohammad Ashraful, 5 Shakib Al Hasan (capt), 6 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 7 Mahmudullah, 8 Abdur Razzak, 9 Mashrafe Mortaza, 10 Rubel Hossain, 11 Suhrawadi Shuvo

Seamers Chris Mpofu and Keegan Meth impressed in Zimbabwe's defeat in the tour game against Bangladesh Cricket Board XI. A lot will be expected from them against the home team's powerful top five before the spinners can come into play.

Zimbabwe (probable): 1 Hamilton Masakadza, 2 Brendan Taylor, 3 Chamu Chibhabha, 4 Tatenda Taibu (wk), 5 Elton Chigumbura (capt), 6 Craig Ervine, 7 Keegan Meth, 8 Prosper Utseya, 9 Graeme Cremer, 10 Raymond Price, 11 Chris Mpofu

Stats and trivia

  • The two teams have clashed 47 times, with Bangladesh winning 25 matches
  • Ashraful, with 3354 runs, is by far Bangladesh's highest run-getter in ODIs. Shakib and Tamim come next.
  • Elton Chigumbura has the worst economy-rate among bowlers who have played at least 50 one-dayers and taken 50 wickets

Quotes

"I think it'll be a bit different series than the one against the Kiwis as we have had the experience to play in Bangladesh quite often."
Hamilton Masakadza is confident that his side can compete well in this series

"We are at home; it is our wicket, our conditions and our crowd. They should feel a little scared."
Julien Fountain, Bangladesh's fielding coach, shoots down Masakadza's optimism

Nitin Sundar is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Meety on (December 1, 2010, 21:12 GMT)

Oh dear oh dear. Typical - 3 steps forward, 2 steps back. I think the Bangars should bounce back. Recipe for success; 1. Drop Ashraful, 2. Bring in Nafees. Line up should be; 1. Nafees, 2. Tamim, 3. Siddique, 4. Shakib, 5. Mahmudullah, 6. Kayes, 7. Rahim, 8. Shuvo, 9. Mortaza, 10. Shafiful, 11. Razzaq. I would have Kayes down the order to offset a op order collapse - he, Shakib & Siddique are the only bangar batsmen comfortable in taking their time. If the top order fires - Tamim & Nafees could launch the Bangars easily past 100 inside the first 15 overs. There is no place for Ashraful, he has had too many chances & failed, he ran Siddique out - who has been a very consistant force for the Bangars - then self destructed. Bangladesh are better then his amateur performances. I would consider Jahrul Islam & Raqibal as well & drop a pace bowler - boost the batting for no real loss in bowling - particularly as Mahmudullah is as good as a front line bowler. C'mon Bangars!

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 13:45 GMT)

shariar nafees should play against zimbabwe.nafees and tamim is best opening pair of bangladesh.shariar nafees is briliant cricketer.junaid siddiqe is very weak in body and mind strengh although he played but nafees not!very shame for bangladesh cricket. shariar nafees shuold play next 4 matches.

Posted by alexmudiwa on (December 1, 2010, 13:37 GMT)

guess masakadza was right after all

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 13:31 GMT)

shariar nafees is proved himself in international cricket as a brilliant cricketer.also proved against zimbabwe but he is not in squad.very shame.should be play shariar nafees next 4 match.he very fine opener.tamim iqbal and shariar nafees is best opening pairof bangladesh.

Posted by Meety on (December 1, 2010, 3:58 GMT)

Thinking outside the box - maybe Ashraful should open the batting, or be used as when the powerplays are on? I still can't see him being one of the top 7 best batsmen in Bangladesh - I think the w/k Rahim is better!

Posted by Alomgir on (December 1, 2010, 3:03 GMT)

Wish all d best for Bangladesh Team...

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 2:01 GMT)

I agree with everyone here about Shahriar Nafees. He should be in best 11. He should open with Tamim Iqbal. It should be Junaid Siddiqui to be axed. Why is Raqibul still being considered for ODI? He is a slow starter, and stutters with aggressive bowling and fielding before he is set in the crease. I like Shuvo against Zimbabwe, but I think Naeem is almost as good a bowler, and he bats very well in the middle order. He needs to be in best 11 for the World Cup. I also have another suggestion for the selecting board. Please, give Fazle mahmud and Asif Ahmed a chance to prove their mettle during the Zimbabwe series. They both are highly talented and have proven their worth recently.

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 1:33 GMT)

Although Nafees scored only 10 run in only practice match against Zimbabwe he should come in World cup squad of Bangladesh. May be selectors give one chance to Junaed Siddique and Imrul Ques. So we hope that Shariar Nafees will perform well in domestic league before world cup and must return to squad.

Posted by Meety on (November 30, 2010, 23:50 GMT)

Can't believe Nafees is not in the squad. I am enjoying the rise of Banga cricket, but really, statistically he is one of the 3 best ODI batsmen the Banga's have EVER produced. How many Banga's ave. over 30? I was looking forward to seeing Tamim & Nafees opening in the W/Cup, would of been bloody brilliant!!!!!

Posted by Chunati on (November 30, 2010, 21:29 GMT)

Thanks for acknowledging the mistake in Bangladesh team. It would be nice if you had posted my note which was sent some 6-7 hrs. back.

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Nitin SundarClose
Nitin Sundar Social media manager Nitin spent his formative years perfecting the art of landing the googly, before blossoming into a book-cricket specialist. More excellence followed in the underarm version of the game before, like the majority of India's misguided youth, he started taking studies seriously. After four forgettable years of electrical engineering, followed by a rigorous MBA and 16 months in the strategy consulting industry, he began to ponder life's more profound issues. Such as the angle made by Brian Lara's bat with the horizontal at the peak of his back-lift. A move to ESPNcricinfo followed and Nitin is now a prolific nurdler in office cricket, with a questionable technique against the short ball.
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