Hosts' power-hitters await struggling visitors
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Start time 2000 local (0000 GMT)
Before Test matches and just a couple of days after an ODI series, a T20 is seemingly a good medium for West Indies and Bangladesh to release pent-up energies which would not necessarily go into the longer version. Perhaps the hosts will use the one-off game to spend their remaining limited-overs vigour as the visitors have struggled so far and are quite uncomfortable playing T20s.
West Indies' comprehensive ODI series win, having most of their batsmen in form and picking players who had been regularly playing the format in the last month is enough reason to look forward to a more powerful outing on a ground where six-hitting looks ridiculously easy.
T20 captain Darren Sammy has pointed out that this game is important for players who play only in this format. Many of the CPL's star performers, the likes of Andre Russell, Krishmar Santokie and Dwayne Smith would be expected to be on top of their games, while West Indies also included Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo, who had missed the New Zealand T20s in July.
The focus will also be on Denesh Ramdin, who slammed 169 in the third ODI. He struck 11 sixes during the innings, at times clearing the straight boundary with some ease. It would mean that the moment he comes out to bat at Warner Park, the Bangladesh bowlers will be on high alert.
There could be a change in the attack with Rubel Hossain an option for Mushfiqur Rahim, apart from Mashrafe Mortaza and the impressive Al-Amin Hossain. Taskin Ahmed has not played since the first ODI while the spinners were under constant attack in the last game, having done reasonably well in the second ODI.
Whether the captain and coach would go with Abdur Razzak is surely going to be a talking point as the selectors have said recently that they want to move on from him in T20s. Taijul Islam is in their plans, but it is debatable how wise it would be to expose the new left-arm spinner at this venue.
The team's main headache is still the batsmen although Tamim Iqbal's half-century would give them some relief. Anamul Haque has missed out twice after the century, and this is a chance to see whether Shamsur Rahman and Mithun Ali are in contention.
Mushfiqur has come under considerable criticism from the BCB for his decisions on the field as well as in selection. He could even be replaced by a new captain in the shorter format, so this could be a good opportunity to respond with a strong showing. He would, however, need his out-of-form team-mates, Nasir Hossain and Mahmudullah particularly, to stand up on a very crucial occasion.
West Indies WLLWW (last five completed matches, most recent first)
In the spotlight
He will possibly come to bat lower than Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard and Darren Sammy, but Andre Russell was the most watchable allrounder in the CPL, and he would be expected to bring that form to this game.
Tamim Iqbal finally scored a fifty in the third ODI, his first in international cricket since October last year. He batted freely on both sides of the wicket, and will be expected to continue his new-found confidence.
Sulieman Benn is likely to replace the injured Samuel Badree while the CPL's second-highest wicket-taker, Santokie, could pip Sheldon Cottrell, who played against New Zealand.
West Indies (probable) 1 Chris Gayle, 2 Dwayne Smith, 3 Andre Fletcher, 4 Denesh Ramdin (wk), 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Darren Sammy (capt), 8 Andre Russell, 9 Sunil Narine, 10 Krishmar Santokie, 11 Sulieman Benn
Bangladesh may not expose rookie bowlers Taijul and Taskin on the smallish Warner Park. That would mean Razzak being picked despite the selectors' reservations, while there are likely to be places for Shamsur and Mithun.
Bangladesh (probable) 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Anamul Haque, 3 Shamsur Rahman, 4 Mushfiqur Rahim (capt & wk), 5 Mithun Ali, 6 Nasir Hossain, 7 Mahmudullah, 8 Mashrafe Mortaza, 9 Sohag Gazi/Abdur Razzak, 10 Al-Amin Hossain, 11 Rubel Hossain
Pitch and conditions
There will be a lot of runs at this ground, given the nature of the wicket and boundary size. A late evening start wouldn't make much of a difference as it is a hard surface, encouraging extravagant strokeplay.
Stats and trivia
- Warner Park has only hosted one T20 international, in 2009 between West Indies and Bangladesh
- West Indies lead 3-2 in the head-to-head
"Our side is powerful, and once we fire on all cylinders, we are always going to be a destructive force."
"There is a lot of work to be done before the T20 as we need to come up with some good plans for these short boundaries and big hitters."
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84