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Russell injury hits West Indies ahead of series decider

Jason Holder exults after West Indies' last-over win Getty Images

Big Picture

Captain Jason Holder, who had given away nearly seven runs an over until then in the game, defended seven runs in the last over to hand West Indies a come-from-behind win over Bangladesh in the second ODI. While West Indies are riding high after the series-levelling contest, there are quite a few concerns that could possibly deny them their first bilateral ODI series win since 2014.

Shimron Hetmyer's 93-ball 125, and his 103-run fifth-wicket stand with Rovman Powell held the home side together for a long period after they stuttered in the first half of their innings. Ashley Nurse and Devendra Bishoo have been quite economical in the series so far although they haven't taken a lot of wickets, and their death bowling duo Alzarri Joseph and Keemo Paul lacks experience.

Bangladesh's seamers had the same problem in both games, even though the likes of Rubel Hossain and Mustafizur Rahman are far more experienced. While they are particularly impressive in the middle-overs, Bangladesh have not rectified their bowling in the death overs yet. Bangladesh's batting too has caused concern. They often find themselves stuck in the middle of the innings, and it had happened in both the matches with two of their prolific batsmen - Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal - at the crease. Mushfiqur Rahim getting out in the most crucial stage in the second game may have stuck out like a sore thumb, but it is hard to ignore that he has shown good form.

Sabbir Rahman hasn't shown form in both the games, but Bangladesh do not have a like-for-like replacement for him. The visitors have five young players on the bench, but, barring any last-minute injuries, none of Nazmul Islam, Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Abu Hider, Abu Jayed and Liton Das would be called up for such a crucial game.

Form guide

West Indies: WLLWW (last five completed matches, most recent first) Bangladesh: LWLLW

In the spotlight

Shimron Hetmyer has stood out among the West Indies batting line-up with his temperament and strokeplay. His 93-ball 125 was a match-winning effort, which would make him the big wicket for the Bangladesh bowlers in the series-decider.

Anamul Haque's sudden attack in the second ODI didn't last for too long but it is the first time in his stop-start five-year international career that he looked aggressive. A more sustained effort could see him become Tamim's regular opening partner going into the 2019 World Cup.

Team news

Andre Russell has been ruled out of the match due to a knee injury; a Cricket West Indies release said he should be fit for selection for the three-match T20 series that follows. Sheldon Cottrell has been named his replacement for the ODI.

West Indies (probable): 1 Chris Gayle, 2 Evin Lewis, 3 Shai Hope (wk), 4 Jason Mohammed, 5 Shimron Hetmyer, 6 Jason Holder (capt), 7 Rovman Powell, 8 Ashley Nurse, 9 Devendra Bishoo, 10 Keemo Paul/Sheldon Cottrell, 11 Alzarri Joseph

Sabbir Rahman is the only one with a questionable position in the side, having so far made just 15 runs in the two matches. But the reserve batsmen - Nazmul Hossain Shanto and Liton Das - are not prepared or seen as middle-order finishers. Unless the team management wants to risk picking Shanto, Sabbir will keep playing.

Bangladesh (probable): 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Anamul Haque, 3 Shakib Al Hasan, 4 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 5 Mahmudullah, 6 Sabbir Rahman, 7 Mosaddek Hossain, 8 Mehidy Hasan Miraz, 9 Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), 10 Rubel Hossain, 11 Mustafizur Rahman

Pitch and conditions

It will be the first international match in Warner Park after two years, and the first day ODI since 2012. Good weather is expected in Basseterre.

Stats and trivia

  • Earlier in the series, Tamim Iqbal became the first Bangladeshi to score 3,000 runs in ODIs played at away and neutral venues.

  • The three-run loss in the second ODI was Bangladesh's closest margin of defeat in an away game. The previous closest was a five-run loss against Zimbabwe in Harare in 2011. Coincidentally, Mushfiqur Rahim also fell in the last over of that game.