Big picture: Bangladesh, Afghanistan want to move on from crises, drama
There is a lot of talk about left-handed opening batsman Tanzeed as Bangladesh have selected only two regular openers in him and Liton Das. However, this year Bangladesh’s all-weather batsman Mehdi Hasan Miraz may open against Afghanistan, as he did for some time in the Asia Cup. Mehdi has shown excellent form this year with both bat and ball and the pace attack under Taskin Ahmed has also performed well. He has shown that Bangladesh no longer needs to rely on their spinners in the subcontinent, no matter what the format.
Bangladesh will want to stop relying too much on players like Shakib and Mushfiqur Rahim, playing their fifth World Cup, and Mahmudullah, playing their fourth tournament. Their future depends on it.
A lot will depend on how their spin trio Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi and Mujeeb Ur Rahman perform. His batting also needs to improve in big tournaments. The fact that Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran have been in good form this year and Rahmat Shah, captain Hashmatullah Shahidi and Nabi have also done well bodes well for them.
afghanistan LLLLLL (last five ODIs, most recent first)
In the spotlight: Afghan opener and floater Mehdi
Everyone talks about Afghanistan’s spinners, but they want you to know that their opening batsman Are also impressive. Zadran and Gurbaz are their top two run-scorers this year, and they are the most likely pair to add a half-century or century partnership in a line-up where the batting has not always given them the best numbers. Like fire and ice: Gurbaz provides the big hits and Zadran leads the innings with regular strike rotation. Zadran is also capable of delivering big hits, emerging as one of their brightest stars since the 2019 World Cup.
Team News: Naveen and Umarzai are expected to arrive
Afghanistan last played in the Asia Cup and have since dropped Gulbadin Naib and Karim Janat, who should be replaced by Azmatullah Omarzai and Naveen-ul-Haq.
afghanistan (Probable): 1 Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), 2 Ibrahim Zadran, 3 Rahmat Shah, 4 Hashmatullah Shahidi (capt), 5 Mohammad Nabi, 6 Najibullah Zadran, 7 Azmatullah Umarzai, 8 Rashid Khan, 9 Naveen-ul-Haq, 10 Mujeeb Ur Rehman, 11 Fazalhaq Farooqui
Bangladesh have ten players to choose from but will have to choose between left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed and offspinner Mahedi Hasan for the eighth spot.
bangladesh (Probable): 1 Tanjeed Hasan, 2 Liton Das, 3 Nazmul Hussain Shanto, 4 Shakib Al Hasan (captain), 5 Tauheed Hridoy, 6 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 7 Mehdi Hasan Miraj, 8 Nasum Ahmed/Mahedi Hasan, 9 Taskin Ahmed, 10 Shoriful Islam, 11 Hasan Mahmood
pitch and conditions
Stats and Trivia: Bangladesh on the cusp of a three-peat
- Bangladesh have a chance to win their third consecutive first match of the World Cup campaign after defeating Afghanistan (2015) and South Africa (2019). Afghanistan has lost its first two matches in the last World Cup.
- Shakib Al Hasan needs 41 more runs to top the list of all-rounders with 1000 runs and 10 wickets in the world cup, He already has 34 wickets, which is free and clear for the next best in the same list.
- Afghanistan’s 29 ODI appearances over the past four years are the lowest among all the teams participating in this year’s World Cup.
“I think there are four or five players from that (Under-19) team that won the World Cup in 2020. They will bring a lot of positivity to the group. They have done that in the past. They have a lot of energy. I am excited about it. ” The entire team including my staff. “We have high expectations and we want to have fun.”
Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusingha About players playing Senior World Cup for the first time
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84