Semi-Final: Bangladesh v India at Edgbaston
Thursday Jun 15, 2017 – 19:30 AEST
|Top batsman India||Rohit Sharma ($4.00)|
|Top Batsman Bangladesh||Shakib Al Hasan ($6.00)|
|Top Bowler India||Bhuvaneshwar Kumar ($4.00)|
|Top Bowler Bangladesh||Rubel Hossain ($5.00)|
The second semi-final of the Champions Trophy is going to be played between India and Bangladesh. That’s right. India won the last edition of this trophy while this is the first time that Bangladesh has ever qualified for a semi-final of a world ICC event. The Bangladeshi’s were also lucky to be on the right side of some rain interventions but that is taking nothing away from them.
This is not going to be a walk in the park for India, not by a long shot. The drubbing that India gave to Bangladesh in the warm-up game will not hold much thought for either team.
There is actually quite a bit of history between the two teams. Bangladesh knocked India out of the World Cup in 2007 before India humiliated them at home in the 2011 World Cup. The Bangladeshi’s believed they were robbed of a win in the 2015 World Cup quarter-finals against India by a poor umpiring decision.
India was also beaten by Bangladesh 2-1 in an ODI series before beating them twice in the Asia Cup last year.
Their last encounter was in the T20 World Cup which Bangladesh should have won but they ended up choking in the most spectacular fashion possible. This also led to some heated exchanges between fans and even players after the match. There is no love lost between the fans of the two teams.
The two teams have met 32 times in ODI cricket with India winning 26 out of those matches. Bangladesh, though, has won 2 out of the last 3 encounters between the two. In neutral venues, India holds a 6-1 advantage from 7 matches.
This Bangladesh team is however greatly improved from ones seen in the past and is extremely capable of beating India on its day.
Players To Watch Out for
The Wolf has been very impressed with Shikhar Dhawan this series as he continues to be the most prolific batsmen in recent ICC events. For this match though, Rohit Sharma seems to jump out as the best bet for top batsman India. He has 3 scores of 70 or more in his last 4 matches and enjoys playing against Bangladesh.
He top scored with 137 the last time they played each other in the 2015 World Cup and will back himself to come good once again.
On a side note, there is quite a bit of rivalry between Virat Kohli and Rubel Hossain which could bring the best out of the combative Indian captain.
Among the bowlers, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar is the one that the Wolf likes most for this match. He has picked up wickets with the new ball and been phenomenal with his Yorkers at the death. He has 4 wickets from 3 matches so far at the best economy rate for any Indian bowler.
Shakib Al Hasan and Mahmudallah stunned the Kiwis with one of the best ODI partnerships you will ever see. The Bangladeshi team will know they will need something similar this time around as well from some of their batsmen.
Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim enjoy playing against India and have always done well. Shakib is a form player while Mahmudallah seems to have returned to his best after a slump in form.
The Wolf thinks that it is Shakib Al Hasan that stands the best chance of success against the Indian bowling. He plays in the IPL regularly against all the Indian bowlers and is in excellent form. He is averaging 51.00 in the Champions Trophy so far at a strike rate of 89.47 and looks like a good bet for the top batsman in this match.
Bangladesh will no doubt stick to their 4 pronged pace attack after the success they found in the last match. Rubel Hossain with his slingy action can be difficult to pick and bowls very well at the death. He and Mustafizur Rahman will be crucial to Bangladesh’s chances.
Back Rubel Hossain to be the top Bangladeshi bowler in this match because the Indian could decide to be cautious against Mustafizur and Taskin.
Pitch and Conditions
The last match at the Oval saw India decimate South Africa on a pitch that was just a littler slower than expected. The Wolf thinks some amount of spin could definitely play a role and prompt India to play both their spinners again.
A score of 300 should still be considered par though. The forecast for the match is clear with only a slight chance of showers.
The Wolf thinks India has the skill and experience to win this one although Bangladesh could give them a fright. Back India to win.