Zimbabwe v Bangladesh, 1st ODI, Harare August 11, 2011

Bangladesh aim to reassert dominance


Match facts August 12, Harare Sports Club
Start time 0930 (0730GMT 1300IST)

The Big Picture

After the heroics in Harare on Monday, when Zimbabwe won an intriguing Test match against Bangladesh, cricket returns to the format the two teams play most often. An ODI series between them is not a rare thing and the players know each other so well that most of them see each other as colleagues, not opponents. In the last two years, they have played three five-match series against each other, with Bangladesh winning all three; two at home, one away.

Their dominance over Zimbabwe may suggest that Bangladesh are firm favourites on the eve this series, but the tables have turned a little. Zimbabwe are the darlings of the cricket world after winning their comeback Test and will want to maintain their status with a convincing performance in the ODIs. Their most recent showing in the fifty-over format, at the 2011 World Cup, was disappointing. They registered just one win over minnows Kenya and their five defeats meant that any outside chance they had of making it to the quarter-finals quickly disappeared.

They haven't played an ODI since March, and with all the focus on their Test return, they will have to adjust quickly to this version of the game. With exciting players like batsman Forster Mutizwa and seamers Brian Vitori and Tendai Chatara coming through the franchise system, Zimbabwe have a lot of talent to show off and there would be no better time to do so than now, at the start of a summer that will see them also host Pakistan and New Zealand.

Bangladesh were widely expected to progress to the quarter-finals of the World Cup, but defeats to India, West Indies and South Africa undid the hard work they put into their wins over Ireland, England and Netherlands. In the only series they have played in the aftermath of their World Cup exit, Australia made a mockery of them, showing that the gap between Bangladesh and some of the other teams still exists.

With talk of disharmony in the camp, general regression and Shakib Al Hasan's captaincy under scrutiny, Bangladesh will be looking to let their on-field efforts answer the questions that are swirling around them. Stuart Law's tenure as coach didn't start in the best way but this is also an opportunity for him to stamp his style on the team.

Form guide (most recent first)

Zimbabwe WLLLL
Bangladesh LLLLW

In the spotlight

A year ago, Chris Mpofu was tossed about like a ragdoll by South Africa's batsmen but instead of demoralising him, his experience served as the watershed moment of his career. He realised that to compete at international level he would have to work on various aspects of his game, particularly accuracy. He has improved massively since then but has only had a few matches to display his progress. With Vitori and Kyle Jarvis stealing the show in the Test, Mpofu's role did not attract much attention, but, as the senior seamer he will have a big role to play both as a role model and a containing bowler.

After Tamim Iqbal's inflammatory comments in the Test match, in which he described Brian Vitori and Kyle Jarvis as "ordinary" and "nothing special," the pressure is on the feisty Bangladesh batsman to live up to his big talk. He didn't have to face the Zimbabwean pair after making his comments, because he had already got out to a loose shot after a rollicking start, so this will be the first opportunity for them to exact revenge. If Tamim wants his statements to stick, he will have to bat with some kind of aggression in the ODI series.

Team news

Brendan Taylor will return to the opening berth and will partner Hamilton Masakadza at the top. Forster Mutizwa, who was considered unlucky to miss out on the Test match after his performance in the warm-up, is likely to slot into the middle order. Brian Vitori is in line for an ODI debut, after his fine showing in the Test match. Prosper Utseya will be brought in to aid the spin department, meaning Keegan Meth may have to wait a little longer to make an appearance in this series.

Zimbabwe (probable): 1 Brendan Taylor (capt), 2 Hamilton Masakadza, 3 Vusi Sibanda, 4 Craig Ervine, 5 Tatenda Taibu (wk), 6 Forster Mutizwa, 7 Elton Chigumbura, 8 Prosper Utseya, 9 Ray Price, 10 Brian Vitori, 11 Chris Mpofu.

Junaid Siddique, who was not included in the one-off Test, should find his way back into the playing XI for the ODIs. Mohammad Ashraful, who showed some form in that Test, is also likely to play after missing out on the series against Australia, and Nasir Hossain, the 19-year-old offspinner, could make his debut.

Bangladesh (probable): 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Imrul Kayes, 3 Junaid Siddique, 4 Shahriar Nafees, 5 Mohammad Ashraful, 6 Shakib Al Hasan (capt), 7 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 8 Abdur Razzak, 9 Shafiul Islam, 10 Rubel Hossain, 11 Nasir Hossain

Pitch and conditions
The deck is said to be as flat as the road outside and is expected to have nothing in it for the quicks - even less than it had during the Test match, where bowling was hard work. But, as that fixture showed, with consistent lines and lengths, even a pitch that was good for batting could be used to the seamers' advantage. The bounce is expected to be consistent and with the slow nature of the track, both captains should employ a lot of spin.

Stats and trivia

  • Zimbabwe and Bangladesh have played each other 31 times in the last five years, with Bangladesh winning 23 of those encounters. Overall, they have clashed 51 times, with 28 victories going the way of Bangladesh and 23 wins to Zimbabwe.

  • Shahriar Nafees's batting average against Zimbabwe is 62.41, almost double his overall average of 33.34. Three of his four hundreds came against them, including his highest score of 123.

  • Ray Price's best bowling figures of 4 for 22 came against Bangladesh in January 2009. His highest score with the bat, 46, was also achieved against Bangladesh in August that same year.


We are expecting them to come out fighting in the ODI series. They rely so much on spin so we expect to face 30 overs of spin.
Brendan Taylorexpects a Bangladesh backlash after their heavy defeat in the Test match

In any series, the first one-day is always very important. If we can win the first game, the momentum will be with us.
Shakib al Hasan wants Bangladesh to start positively

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 7:30 GMT

    This series will boil down to who wants to win more and I have to back Zim coz it's been so long since they've really enjoyed any kind of success. The Test win was a reminder of what they can do and what it feels like to be a winner. Go Zim, do your winning with ball & bat and not with mouth like others!!!!

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 7:09 GMT

    @Milu... bang whitewashing india.... ROFL... how many test matches have you won till now... 3 ?.... first try winning a test against zimbabwe or a depleted west indies... after that you can talk about playing against a top team... @Taufiq H Siddiquee... i admit india is playing very badly against england... if a team has to stop playing just because of one bad series... then its bang who should stop playing cricket... i have respect for bangladesh and their cricket... but that doesnt mean i wll just keep on watching ur stupid comments... u lost not because of india... u lost because your players played badly.... dont blame others for your poor performance....

  • Baundule on August 12, 2011, 5:40 GMT

    With Jamie Siddons gone, Bangladesh can only improve from here. Expecting an ODI series win against an spirited Zimbabwe.

  • Sumon on August 12, 2011, 5:34 GMT

    Bangladesh player should not show any kind of arrogance to any weak team because just for this they were defeated by weak team like Kenya, Canada, Ireland and Zimbabwe....BD team has not that kind of ability like Australia by which they can beat any team as they say....

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 3:05 GMT

    I'm a huge fan of BD cricket. I've been following BD cricket for almost last 25 to 30 years. Anyways, what I wanted to say is..BD will get a win herie and there, but as a team they will never improve until they remove political feagures from BCB.But also I think BD will win in this series 3-2. Sothat Tamim will stat aggressively.

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 1:22 GMT

    @Milu - Why are you including India in this? We are ranked no.9 in tests. India is no.1 If you want to make a comparison between the two teams where Bangladesh comes out on top, write about how we actually played better in England last yr against almot the same team. Just don't write embarrassing comments like the one you did.

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 0:52 GMT

    @ deepu111 Did I said anything about the test status of Ind? It's u who said this actually!! I just mentioned about the universal application of the logic mentioned by Hurricane08....We know this is the game of cricket, anything may happen ...but you people r always unnecessarily trying to undermine others...if it appears boring to you, than don't watch...we also feel bored sometimes watching few test matches.....!!

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 0:42 GMT

    We are misssing Masrafe and Alok kapali,Hope Tigers will win the series.

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2011, 0:34 GMT

    Bangladesh has been terrible through out this year with performances like 58 and 78 all out and defeat in test against Zimbabwe. I would think with the home advantage Zimbabwe will win this series.

  • Mahafuz Mohammed on August 12, 2011, 0:28 GMT

    @Taufiq H Siddiquee , selaam walekum. My dear friend do you have any idea what you are talking about? How India is performing at this point of time in England has many cause factors. Well even if I dont consider those factors as they might sound excuses, its between you and me, this is BD's general performance. I dont have anything against BD rather have quite few BD friends. So dont take it personally... I just pointed a fact.

    @Milu Ahmed---- your sense of humour is really great mate... keep it up

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