Teams hope rain stays away
Match FactsSunday, December 12
Start time 09:00 (03:00 GMT)
The Big Picture
All eyes will be on the weather in Chittagong ahead of the fifth and final ODI of the series between Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. The fourth match was called off due to a soggy outfield, and more showers are predicted for the weekend. The drainage system at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium has come in for flak, and the Bangladesh Cricket Board's chief Manzur Ahmed has suggested using a large cover across the whole ground to protect the outfield. Otherwise, even mild rain could lead to the last match being abandoned.
With Bangladesh leading 2-1, the best Zimbabwe can do is draw the series, and their coach Alan Butcher admitted that would be a good result for them after they were beaten 4-1 in Bangladesh in 2009. Zimbabwe have lost their previous four ODI series in Bangladesh.
Sunday's one-dayer is the last scheduled international match for both sides before the 2011 World Cup, and may be the final chance for fringe players to make their case. Both teams have settled bowling attacks, but there are still spots to be fought for in their batting line-ups.
Hamilton Masakadza, one of Zimbabwe's most important batsman over the past few years, has been in poor form and will be under pressure from Regis Chakabva for a place in the team. An experienced batsman for the home side, Mohammad Ashraful, will also be struggling for a place, with Raqibul Hasan and Naeem Islam likely to keep him out again.
(most recent first)
Bangladesh: WWLWW Zimbabwe: LLWLL
Watch out for …
Craig Ervine has had a couple of starts in the series, but has still only got one half-century in his 13-match ODI career. Ervine said he had been working hard on playing spinners in the nets, and it was paying off in the series. In the first two ODIs he was the only batsman who looked capable of dealing with Bangladesh's left-arm spinners in the middle overs.
Abdur Razzak has a chance to break two records in the match in Chittagong. He has the chance to be the first bowler to take four wickets in four consecutive ODIs if he repeats his efforts of the first three matches in the last one. With 13 wickets in the series, he is also three wickets away from the record for the most number of wickets by a bowler in a five-match bilateral ODI series.
Ahead of the fourth match, both teams' players said they expected significant turn from the Chittagong wicket. Ahead of Sunday's game, the question is more whether there will be any play at all. The poor drainage facilities are even more concerning as the venue will host two World Cup games. Ahmed said there was no time for significant alterations to the ground since the World Cup is two months away. "We have to bring a large cover to protect this ground since the drainage system is not up to the mark," he said.
Elton Chigumbura, who missed the previous game with a groin strain, should be fit for the last match. Masakadza practised in the nets on Friday, so will probably get another opportunity to prove himself.
Zimbabwe (probable): 1 Brendan Taylor, 2 Hamilton Masakadza, 3 Regis Chakabva, 4.Elton Chigumbura, 5 Tatenda Taibu (wk), 6 Craig Ervine, 7 Prosper Utseya, 8 Graeme Cremer, 9 Shingirai Masakadza, 10 Raymond Price, 11 Chris Mpofu
Bangladesh are unlikely to change their winning combination.
Bangladesh (probable): 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Imrul Kayes, 3 Junaid Siddique, 4 Raqibul Hasan, 5 Shakib Al Hasan (capt), 6 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 7 Naeem Islam, 8 Suhrawadi Shuvo, 9 Mashrafe Mortaza, 10 Abdur Razzak, 11 Shafiul Islam
Stats and Trivia
- Zimbabwe have won 20.61% of their matches in the subcontinent, having got 20 victories out of 97 matches.
- Bangladesh's winning percentage in ODIs over the last two years is 48.89%, the sixth best among all nations.
"A better ground for soccer? You might get football matches called off here."
Alan Butcher is not impressed with the soggy condition of the ground in Chittagong
"It is very frustrating, considering the sun was out virtually the whole day but we couldn't play the match."
Jamie Siddons, the Bangladesh coach, was similarly disappointed at the time the outfield took to dry.