Zimbabwe v Bangladesh, 1st T20, Bulawayo May 10, 2013

Can Bangladesh give Mushfiqur a fitting farewell?


Match facts

May 11, 2013
Start time 1330 (1130 GMT)

Big Picture

Zimbabwe's last Twenty20 experience at home is a cheery one. In the final of an unofficial three-nation tournament last year, they crushed a South Africa XI by nine wickets. There were several heroes that day for the home side, and as they play their first home T20 international in 18 months, the spirits would still remain high. Bangladesh, meanwhile, are at the opposite end of the cheery scale.

Zimbabwe have just clinched the three-match ODI series after coming back from a game down. They have a few more players who have stood up when the chips were down. The Taylors and Masakadzas took a backseat as Vusi Sibanda, Sean Williams and Tendai Chatara grabbed their opportunities to turn in match-winning performances. Zimbabwe would still rely on a strong bowling performance to pull them through, like in the last two ODIs. Chatara complemented Kyle Jarvis and Brian Vitori quite well, using his accuracy and bounce to surprise the visitors.

Hamilton Masakadza will be at the forefront of their batting and, with Sibanda also in form, there will be much to look forward to for the Bulawayo crowd that turns up on Saturday afternoon.

The same cannot be said about the visitors. After going down in the ODI series, they have lost their leader after he resigned in a fit of rage. Mushfiqur Rahim will still lead the team out but these will be his last matches as captain. For the time being, the team has to give him a fine send-off.

Bangladesh, just like Zimbabwe, have been without a win in their last five matches. Remarkably, for a young side with lots of trigger-happy batsmen, Bangladesh admittedly struggle in T20s. It will still be a close contest at the start but the team with more confidence will take this away quickly.

Form guide

Zimbabwe: LLLLL (completed games, most recent results first)
Bangladesh: LLLLL

Players to watch

Hamilton Masakadza has six international fifties in this format, and can be explosive during a chase. He recovered from a poor spell in the BPL with a more productive performance in Zimbabwe's domestic T20 tournament, averaging 44.83 at a strike-rate just under 140.

Bangladesh don't possess too many T20 specialists but Ziaur Rahman is one of them. His big-hitting abilities have not come to the fore so far on this tour but this is a format where he has made a name for himself. With his medium-pace is coming together, he should go into these two matches in a confident frame of mind.

Team news

Zimbabwe are likely to continue with the combination from the ODI series. However, Elton Chigumbura has been ruled out of the T20 series after suffering a groin strain. Fast bowler Shingi Masakadza or legspinner Tinotenda Mutombodzi may find a place in the playing XI.

Zimbabwe (possible): 1 Vusi Sibanda, 2 Hamilton Masakadza, 3 Sikandar Raza, 4 Brendan Taylor (capt & wk), 5 Malcolm Waller, 6 Sean Williams, 7 Shingi Masakadza/Tinotenda Mutombodzi, 8 Prosper Utseya, 9 Kyle Jarvis, 10 Brian Vitori, 11 Tendai Chatara

Shamsur Rahman will most likely come in, having been around the team since the end of the Test series. He did well in the BPL this year, so he has the runs behind him to stake a claim. The rest of the playing XI could remain the same as the ODI series.

Bangladesh (possible): 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Shamsur Rahman, 3 Mohammad Ashraful, 4 Mushfiqur Rahim (capt & wk), 5 Shakib Al Hasan, 6 Nasir Hossain, 7 Mahmudullah, 8 Ziaur Rahman, 9 Abdur Razzak, 10 Shafiul Islam, 11 Robiul Islam

Pitch and conditions

The 1:30 pm start will aid both both batting sides because the Queens Sports Club pitch flattens out in the afternoon. There will also be slight movement for the quick bowlers.

Stats and trivia

  • Zimbabwe and Bangladesh have played just one T20I in 2006. Bangladesh beat Zimbabwe by 43 runs in that game
  • The Queens Sports Club ground in Bulawayo has never hosted a T20 international
  • Ireland (30) have played more T20 internationals than Bangladesh (28) and Zimbabwe (24)
  • Hamilton Masakadza's six fifties are the most for any batsman on both sides. Abdur Razzak, with 36, has taken the most wickets


"It is a format we haven't played a lot of. But playing at home and winning this series, it gives us some momentum to take forward. We have a few things to work on. But we are going to be up for it."

Zimbabwe captain Brendan Taylor on how motivated his side will be

"There are a couple of Zimbabwe guys who also play in the BPL. They know how we will go about the T20s, but we will hopefully bounce back."

Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim is not entirely banking on his players' BPL experience

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • maskurul on May 11, 2013, 11:20 GMT

    Bangladesh is moving hither and tither to hide themselves from their poor performances.now a pivotal question has been raised from here.is Mushfiqh is blame for this reason?the answer is very clear to all.no.Mushfiqh is talented cricketer and he is fit for this captaincy.only he is the skipper who wants to lead his team with accuracy and consistency.there is no doubt here.but a inter conflict ion is going on among the senior cricketers.at first BCB should find out it.otherwise it would create negative effect for the Bangladesh cricket.

  • tiger_mate on May 11, 2013, 11:01 GMT

    Bangladeshi Squad for this match would be - 1. Tamim Iqbal 2. Mohammad Ashraful 3. Mominul Haque 4. Shamshur Rahman 5. Shakib al Hasan 6. Mushfikur Rahman (Captain and Wckt) 7. Nasir Hossain 8. Mahmudullah 9. Ziaur Rahman 10. Shafiul Islam 11. Rabiul Islam

    I think in T20 BD don't need any spin specialist, because we have Shakib and mahmudullah in the squad. Ashraful, Mominul also can bowl as a part timer.

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2013, 10:56 GMT

    It is clear that our top order is not clicking due to Ashraful bad form. When Tamim or someone got out at other end then there is every possibility that Ashraful will throw his wicket soon. That's why in this whole one day series BD was struggling at the top. As Mominul was less experienced at number 4, so all the pressure was on him at middle and lower order. Tamim needs someone reliable who can rotate strikes as well allow him to play his natural game. Still i think, Musfiq should bat lower middle order specially in One day. He is much better Test batsman than one day. In one day sometime he has a tendency to get out quickly. We need someone reliable at number 3 in one day which is very important position. The approach at number 3 batsman should be to stay wicket longer time and just rotate the strikes with odd boundaries. After loosing the 2nd one day, Why team management did not shuffle the order. It seemed to me, Sometime our think tank took ZiM lightly in this whole tour

  • Sl-Cricfan: on May 11, 2013, 8:15 GMT

    Mushy are you silly this is not your last match.this is only begining.you must go farward with your team you have long way to go........

  • grahaam on May 11, 2013, 7:33 GMT

    If Bangladesh go spin Zim will struggle , only Williams and Taylor will handle this , Masakadza is woeful against spin and Sibanda struggles if the ball does not come to the bat , This will be a good move for the Tourists

  • shaikwasi on May 11, 2013, 6:20 GMT

    For the 1st T20 BD Team should be like that 1 Tamim, 2 Ashraful, 3 Shamsur, 4 Shakib, 5 Nasir, 6 Musfiq, 7 Mahmudullah, 8 Ziaur, 9 Razzak, 10 Gazi, 11 Robiul Islam

  • Manik_mia on May 11, 2013, 3:01 GMT

    As our pacers are not doing good in ZIM condition, we should play with 2 pacers. Robiul should be out. Spinners can restrict the run rate at least. Gazi should get a chance in place of Robiul. 3 spinners and 2 pacers. I think BD has a chance here. When ever BD goes as favorite always they are under pressure and lose. Today BD will win.

  • CrICkeeet on May 11, 2013, 2:19 GMT

    My prediction it'll b 1-1 draw

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2013, 2:17 GMT

    Not Ash again, please. Such a waste of a top order slot.

  • Anti_ZCFOutkast on May 10, 2013, 23:03 GMT

    Kyle Jarvis will lead us to victory with the new ball. Malcolm Waller will lead us to victory with the bat.