Being inspired by their five-wicket victory over hosts Sri Lanka in the last match, Bangladesh will play their giant neighbour and league leader India in their 3rd match of the Nidahas Trophy Tri-Nation T201 Cricket at R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Wednesday eying a win to keep their final hope alive.
The day-night match will kick off at 7:30 pm Bangladesh time.
India dominated the tri-nation meet securing four points from three matches with two wins and one loss having a run rate of 0.210 and they need a win to confirm the final berth.
The Tigers also needed a win to keep alive their final berth as hosts Sri Lanka (NRR -0.072) and Bangladesh (NRR -0.231) followed the leader securing two points each, playing three and two matches respectively.
Bangladesh, riding on their recent past national captain Mushfiqur Rahim’s unconquered 35-ball 72 runs featuring five fours and four sixes, returned to the winning note with a chasing record after 14 winless T20 matches.
Bangladesh must have a buzzing dressing room too, having won in dramatic fashion against Sri Lanka. The fact that their previous highest successful chase was 166 has made the chase of 215 all the more special.
India beat Bangladesh and hosts Sri Lanka by six wickets each in their 2nd and 3rd matches after conceding a five-wicket defeat to Sri Lanka in the opening match while Bangladesh tasted their long-cherished victory in the shorter version of cricket beating the Islander by five wickets in the last match after suffering six-wicket loss to India.
Apart from Wednesday’s match against Indian, Bangladesh will play their match against Sri Lanka on March 16 at the same venue. The two top teams of the three-nation meet will play final of March 18 at the same venue.
What could tilt the next battle, between India and Bangladesh, could be confidence. Whichever side can retain belief within themselves could come out on top on the day.
Liton Das started in fine style before Tamim Iqbal took over the baton. Then Soumya Sarkar struck a few timely blows and Mushfiqur Rahim took over, finishing with a style unbeaten 72 off 35 balls with some help from Mahmudullah.
Bangladesh's bowling could do better, however. Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Nazmul Islam will once again need to slow things down while Mustafizur Rahman and Rubel Hossain have to bowl well in the power play and slog overs. Taskin Ahmed may have to give away his place after being below par.
Bangladesh are unlikely to change their winning line-up but there are strong question marks next to Sabbir Rahman and Taskin Ahmed after the Sri Lanka game. Ariful Haque and Abu Jayed could be options to consider.
India made only one change to the previous game, replacing Rishabh Pant with KL Rahul, and barring any last-minute injuries, they are likely to go with the same XI.
India (probable): Rohit Sharma (capt), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Suresh Raina, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Vijay Shankar, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Shardul Thakur and Jaydev Unadkat.
Bangladesh (probable): Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Liton Das, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah (capt), Sabbir Rahman/Ariful Haque, 7 Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed/Abu Jayed, Rubel Hossain and Nazmul Islam.