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July 14, 2010
Ireland captain William Porterfield has said he wasn't surprised by Bangladesh's recent win against England at Bristol and expects them to come hard at his team during the two back-to-back ODIs at Belfast on Thursday and Friday.
His counterpart Mashrafe Mortaza also expects it to be a competitive series and has challenged his players to maintain focus. Bangladesh's victory in the second ODI was their first win against England in any format, but Porterfield knew the side were capable of causing an upset.
"It was certainly not a surprise, I know Bangladesh is capable of doing this any time," Porterfield said. "They are a very balanced and experienced team and great competitors."
Bangladesh failed to secure a dream series win after they were thrashed in the deciding ODI by 144 runs, after conceding 347 and Porterfield believes there will be some unfinished business for his opponents before they finish the tour.
"This is completely different series and I know Bangladesh will come out of that lost series and will come hard against us," Porterfield said. "We definitely won't let us down at home, we will play our best cricket and the better side will win the games."
Ireland beat Bangladesh the last time they met in an international game, at the World Twenty20 in 2009. Porterfield, however, feels that recent results will not have a bearing on this series.
"We really did well against them in recent past but they are a formidable side, we don't expect to win easily but we are certain to put up a good fight and hopefully it will be great series," he said.
Mortaza said that despite giving England a scare, his team wasn't taking Ireland for granted. Ireland have a chance to overtake Zimbabwe in the rankings and Mortaza added that he was aware of them being an emerging competitor.
"I'm sure Ireland will try their best to do in the world cricket," he said. "We need to play our best to outplay them in these two games."
Mortaza regained the captaincy for the limited-overs leg of the tour and he said he was settling in well to his new role after a long injury battle. "It's great to be fit and back into the team," he said. "I'm also enjoying the captaincy, thanks to all of who trusted me with the responsibility to lead such a talented team."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Plays of the day from the IPL match between Chennai Super Kings and Kings XI Punjab in Abu Dhabi