1st over: Bangladesh 4-0 (Tamim 4, Soumya 0) Tamim peers at the first couple of balls from Henry, playing them with due caution, them jumps all over a straight one, flicking it off his pads to a very fine leg. Henry comes back nicely though, as you might expect, and that’s the only scoring shot from the over.
We’re on. Matt Henry has the ball, Soumya Sarkar and Tamim Iqbal are ready to face up.
The players are out, standing for the anthems, accompanied by a bunch of kids/mascots, some of whom are nearly taller than the more diminutive members of the Bangladesh side.
Do New Zealand have the best set of fast bowlers in the tournament? Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins might have a word, Bhuvi Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah have a case, Jofra Archer has burst onto the international scene but it’s tricky to beat Trent Boult, Matt Henry and Lockie Ferguson. Tim Southee still isn’t quite fit but he’s barely missed with those three blasting away at the top.
Tamim, Soumya, Shakib, Mushfiqur (wk), Mithun, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek, Shaifuddin, Mehidy, Mortaza (c), Mustafizur.
Guptill, Munro, Williamson (c), Taylor, Latham (wk), Neesham, de Grandhomme, Santner, Henry, Ferguson, Boult
New Zealand have won the last three ODIs between these two, but they were all games in New Zealand in February. Arguably a more relevant encounter was on these shores in 2017, during the Champions Trophy, when Bangladesh chased down 266 with relative comfort, despite being pegged back to 33-4 in the 12th over. Centuries from Shaqib-al-Hasan and Mahmudullah did the trick, putting on a record 224 for the fifth wicket at better than a run a ball.
We’re into the guts of the World Cup now. After a few initial games that were troublingly one-sided, we’ve now enjoyed some proper contests, and this one is likely to be no different, a couple of sides who sashayed to victories over fading giants in their first games but who now face more equal opponents.
It’s slightly difficult to get out of the mindset that Bangladesh are underdogs whoever they play, particularly against a team like South Africa, but their convincing victory at the Oval on Saturday wasn’t really a particular shock. They are, man for man, just a better team than the Proteas, who as we speak are being ground into a fine dust by the well-rested Indians. Can you say the same about New Zealand, though?
Again, they are a side routinely underestimated, pegged as dark horses in basically every tournament they enter, despite being runners-up last time and getting to the semi-final in six previous editions of the tournament. Their batting might not be enormously star-studded this time but their bowling attack is deadly, as the hapless Sri Lankans discovered in Cardiff.
Might this be Bangladesh’s last chance of doing something serious at a World Cup for a while, though? The players that have been the core of their team for a decade and more are all now in their 30s – Tamim Iqbal is 30, Mushfiqur Rahim is 31, Shakib-al-Hasan is 32, Mahmudullah is 33, Mashrafe Mortaza is 35. Beating New Zealand today could set them on the way to doing that something serious.
So a game between underdogs who aren’t really underdogs and dark horses who aren’t really dark horses. Should be good. Stick around.
Start: 13.30 BST
Source link : https://www.theguardian.com/sport/live/2019/jun/05/bangladesh-v-new-zealand-cricket-world-cup-2019-live
Publish date : 2019-06-05 12:30:00