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Winner stays in the race, loser goes home

June 8th, 2017 | by admin
Winner stays in the race, loser goes home
Bangladesh
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Match facts

June 9, 2017

Start time 1030 local (0930 GMT)

Big picture

The equation is quite simple ahead of the New Zealand-Bangladesh game: the winner will remain in contention for a semi-final spot if, on June 10, England beat Australia or their match is washed out. However, if Australia beat England, then both New Zealand and Bangladesh are out of the Champions Trophy.

Disappointment of an early exit won’t be setting in for either camp at this point. Staying abreast of the situation is what both New Zealand and Bangladesh will be striving for. They have been meeting quite regularly in the last six months, with New Zealand getting the better of most exchanges.

Back in December, New Zealand won their home ODI series 3-0. But in the second of two encounters in Ireland last month, Bangladesh claimed their first overseas win, albeit that New Zealand were missing five of their first-choice XI. New Zealand now have the likes of Kane Williamson, Trent Boult and Tim Southee back in their line-up, and hope to upend Bangladesh’s progress in their first Champions Trophy campaign since 2006.

So far, however, New Zealand haven’t had a great tournament themselves. They were unlucky against Australia, with rain forcing them to share the points. Williamson struck 100 but their much-vaunted allrounders couldn’t quite turn a strong start into a flying finish as they were bowled out for 291 with an over of their allocation to spare.

Against England too, Williamson’s 87 had put them on course to chase down a stiff target of 311 in Cardiff, but James Neesham, Corey Anderson and Mitchell Santner mustered 31 runs between them. New Zealand banks on the push from these allrounders in the last 10 to 15 overs of their innings, in addition to their bowling skills.

Bangladesh will have to stop this trio, and Colin de Grandhomme too if he is picked, to have any footing in the game. But that’s after they’ve accounted for Martin Guptill, Luke Ronchi and Williamson at the top of the order. Williamson, of course, has two big scores to his name, though the dangerous Guptill has twice made strong starts without yet going big.

Bangladesh will also have to bat well as a collective to beat New Zealand, and not leave it all for Tamim Iqbal to do. The left-handed opener has been Bangladesh’s version of Williamson so far in the tournament – making 128 and 95 – while the rest (apart from Mushfiqur Rahim against England) have been sub-par. It is therefore time for the likes of Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Shakib Al Hasan and Sabbir Rahman to make significant contributions.

Both teams may also have to put up with the threat of rain in this game, although New Zealand have more to fear on this front. A wash-out would confirm their elimination, whereas Bangladesh could still qualify on net run-rate if England beat Australia by a greater margin than they managed against Bangladesh in the tournament opener at The Oval.

Strangely, it sounds like New Zealand have nothing to lose – a role in which Bangladesh have excelled in recent years.

Form guide

New Zealand LLWWW (last five completed matches, most recent first)
Bangladesh LWWLL

In the spotlight

 

Corey Anderson hasn’t been hitting his stride since the 2015 World Cup. He has made just 191 runs at 14.69 during this period, with a top score of 35. But this is the sort of occasion that Anderson should excel in, given how highly he is rated as a ball-striking allrounder.

Mustafizur Rahman has had a quiet tournament so far, with the pitches not really conducive to his cutters. Essentially, the ball isn’t gripping as he would like it to, a problem that spinners often face on smooth surfaces.

Team news

 

New Zealand could look at Colin de Grandhomme as an option in the lower middle-order. Tom Latham also awaits a chance, especially having done well against Bangladesh recently, but even though Neil Broom has struggled it seems unlikely they will make a change to the batting.

New Zealand (probable) 1 Martin Guptill, 2 Luke Ronchi (wk), 3 Kane Williamson (capt), 4 Ross Taylor, 5 Neil Broom, 6 James Neesham, 7 Corey Anderson, 8 Mitchell Santner, 9 Adam Milne, 10 Tim Southee, 11 Trent Boult

Bangladesh could look at streamlining their batting line-up by asking Imrul Kayes to open with Tamim Iqbal and bringing in Mosaddek Hossain in the lower middle-order. But they might just stick to the same XI that played against Australia to give that line-up another chance to redeem itself.

Bangladesh (probable) 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Soumya Sarkar, 3 Imrul Kayes, 4 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 5 Mahmudullah, 6 Shakib Al Hasan, 7 Mosaddek Hossain, 8 Mehedi Hasan, 9 Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), 10 Rubel Hossain, 11 Mustafizur Rahman

Pitch and conditions

 

Rain is forecast in Cardiff early on Friday, but it is likely to drift away after 11am. Both teams may look to bat first despite the rain threats; the last four ODIs here have featured teams topping 300 runs, but only once have those targets been chased successfully, by Pakistan last year. This match will be played on a fresh pitch with a decent covering of grass so all eyes will be on whether it misbehaves at all later in the game.

Stats and trivia

 

  • In Bangladesh’s only previous ODI in Cardiff, they famously beat Australia in 2005. New Zealand meanwhile have won three out of five games at this ground.
  • Neil Broom has been a thorn in Bangladesh’s side in their last five ODIs against New Zealand, scoring 339 runs at an average of 84.75.
  • Tamim Iqbal needs to score 16 runs to topple Mohammad Ashraful as Bangladesh’s leading run-scorer in England. Ashraful’s 300 runs came in 10 ODIs – including a century here in 2005 – while Tamim has made 285 in just five games.

Quotes

 

“I think there was some big positives to take out of the performance against England. We took wickets through the whole innings and kept them to definitely a score that was chase-able.”
Trent Boult

“The way we are playing the last two, three years, there’s a lot of matches we have won and also a few matches we should have won but couldn’t. We know if we can create chances we have to grab them and play hard.”
Mashrafe Mortaza

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