Tigers eying to wrap up ODI series against Zimbabwe

Publish: 7:52 PM, July 17, 2021 | Update: 7:52:PM, July 17, 2021

DHAKA, —After showing an unwavering resolve to make a winning start, Bangladesh are determined to wrap up the three-match ODI series against Zimbabwe as they take on the hosts tomorrow (Sunday) in the second match at Harare Sports Club today.

The match starts at 1.30 pm as per Bangladesh Standard Time and will be aired live on Gazi TV and T Sports.

The Tigers recovered from a shaky start to crush Zimbabwe by 155-run in the first ODI for their fourth largest victory to go up 1-0 in the series. A victory in the second game would give them an unassailable 2-0 lead but the main target is to whitewash Zimbabwe to collect full 30 points from the series since this is the part of ICC ODI Super League, a tournament which will determine which teams would qualify to the 2023 World Cup in India directly.

But Zimbabwe showed they are capable of giving Bangladesh a torrid time. The victory of Bangladesh in the first match was not straightforward as they failed to deal with Zimbabwe fast bowlers in the first hour of the game when they moved the ball admirably, utilizing the early moisture of the pitch.

A sublime century of Liton Das and then a fluent knock of Afif Hossain only helped Bangladesh to post a commendable total after which Shakib Al Hasan took the charge to dismantle Zimbabwe, with his 5-30, his third five-for in the career. Shakib in the process became Bangladesh’s leading wicket-taker, going past Mashrafe Bin Mortaza.

If Zimbabwe could have done well in batting, Bangladesh would surely be in trouble. Only a lack of experience of their top order batsman cost Zimbabwe the game, for which their skipper Brendan Taylor also lamented.

“I thought Zimbabwe bowled exceptionally well in the first 15 overs but the way Liton and Mahmudullah batting and then Afif was really good. And they pulled us out from the difficulty. I thought we bowled well,” Bangladesh captain Tamim Iqbal said.

Bangladesh are highly likely to field the same XI that won the first game even though Liton Das sustained a wrist injury on the way to his fourth ODI century. Nurul Hasan Sohan kept the wicket later instead of him.

After the match, Liton said that the injury was not serious one and a day of rest would heal the pain.

Mustafizur Rahman was kept out in the first match after suffering an ankle injury during the practice game. Bangladesh played Shoriful Islam in his place in the first game and it is likely that he could retain his place as the team management is in favour to give Mustafizur Rahman full rest.

Stat suggested Bangladesh have the upper-hand over Zimbabwe in ODI cricket as they won 48 matches in 76 encounters, including the first ODI. They lost 28 matches. But on Zimbabwe’s soil, Bangladesh lost more matches than they won. Zimbabwe won 15 out of 29 matches at their home against Bangladesh. Even in the last ODI series in Zimbabwe in 2013, the hosts won it by 2-1. A victory in the second ODI however would level the win-loss ratio of Bangladesh at Zimbabwe’s den.

Bangladesh ODI Squad: Tamim Iqbal (Captain), Naim Sheikh, Liton Das, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mosaddek Hossian Shaikat, Mohammad Mithun, Afif Hossian, Nurul Hasan Sohan, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taijul Islam, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Rubel Hossian, Shoriful Islam.