Bangladesh, on the back of a 2-0 Test series victory over the Windies that included a thrashing by an innings and 184 runs in the last Test, will look to carry that momentum and dominance into the limited-overs format as well. The opening game of the three-match One-day International series is scheduled to be played on December 9th at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka where evenly matched teams will slug it out in what is expected to be an interesting series. The Windies have had a disappointing tour so far after losing both the test matches of the two-match Test series that followed a very difficult tour of India. They need to find some form quickly, especially with the World Cup just a few months away.
The two countries have faced each other six times at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in the fifty-over format with the Windies emerging victorious on five occasions. Bangladesh, however, won by two wickets the last time they played an ODI against the West Indies at this ground in December 2012. The hosts, after winning the toss and electing to bowl first, skittled out the visitors for just 217 and then managed to get over the line in a tense chase with six overs to spare.
West Indies: 20
First match: 1999 ICC World Cup – 12th match, Group B, West Indies won by 7 wickets at Clontarf Cricket Club Ground, Dublin on 21st May 1999
Last match: 3rd ODI; Bangladesh won by 18 runs at Warner Park, St Kitts on 28th July 2018
1st ODI: December 09th, 01.30pm @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
2nd ODI: December 11th, 01.30pm @ Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka
3rd ODI: December 14th, 01.30pm @ Sylhet International Cricket Stadium, Sylhet
For Bangladesh, the good news going into the series is that injured opening batsman Tamim Iqbal and star all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan are both fit and return to the ODI set-up but there is also the flip side with Bangladesh’s captain Mashrafe Mortaza facing criticism after announcing he will pursue a political opportunity by contesting the Narail-2 constituency elections in his home district on December 30th, just two weeks after the series finishes and he will be keen to prove that that will not be a distraction.
Tamim, who has been out of action since injuring his wrist during the Asia Cup, has now fully recovered while Shakib too has recuperated from his finger injury. Batsmen Mosaddek Hossain and Fazle Mahmud along with pace bowler Nazmul Hossain are the ones who have been left out from Bangladesh’s 16-man ODI squad. Tamim Iqbal, Mushfiqur Rahim and Imrul Kayes are the ones to watch in Bangladesh’s batting line-up with Kayes topping the runs charts with 349 runs in the previous home ODI series against Zimbabwe. Tamim is the leading run-getter at the Shere Bangla in this format with five centuries and 16 fifties here and marked his return from injury with a blazing match winning century for the BCB XI in the warm up game against the Windies. Rahim too has been amongst the runs and will be another key figure at the top. Shakib Al Hasan will pose a serious threat to the Windies with both bat and ball. The left-arm spinner has taken the most ODI wickets at this ground – 112 in 78 matches. Mehidy Hasan and Mustafizur Rahman are two other bowlers in the side who are likely to cause problems for the visitors. Mehidy finished as the best bowler in the test series with 15 wickets and the off-spinner is expected to give the West Indian batsmen plenty of headache in the ODIs as well.
Bangladesh have won 11 and lost just six out of the 17 one-day internationals they have played this year. Their last ODI series was played in October against Zimbabwe at home. It was a three-match series and the hosts ended up winning all the three matches. Prior to that, Bangladesh faced a three-wicket defeat at the hands of India in the final of the Asia Cup at Dubai.
For the West Indies, Rovman Powell will be captaining the team for the first time in ODIs in the absence of regular skipper Jason Holder who had been ruled out of the entire Bangladesh tour due to a shoulder injury. The Windies have received a boost in their batting department with the return of veteran Darren Bravo who has not played an ODI in over two years. The team’s 15-man ODI squad also includes all-rounders Carlos Brathwaite and Roston Chase.
Shimron Hetmyer was the leading run-getter in the preceding Test series and was also the best batsman for the Windies in the recent ODI series against India. While he is going to be the key man with the bat, the team will also have high hopes pinned on their veteran Marlon Samuels who has a hundred and two fifties in five ODIs at the Shere Bangla. Kieran Powell and Shai Hope are also expected to make strong contributions in the series. When it comes to bowling, West Indies will bank on the likes of Kemar Roach, Carlos Brathwaite and Devendra Bishoo to do the job. Roach has 13 wickets in 6 ODIs at this venue and the speedster will look to hurt Bangladesh with a few early strikes. Bishoo was impressive in the Test series finishing with seven wickets and the Windies will want the leg-spinner to replicate his Test form in the ODIs.
West Indies have not fared too well in the fifty-over format of late, losing eleven and drawing one of their last twelve bilateral ODI series. This year, the Windies have played 15 one-day internationals from which they have one tie, seven wins and as many defeats. Their most recent ODI series was played against India in India – a five-match series which they lost 1-3. Earlier, they lost to Bangladesh 1-2 at home.
Bangladesh – Mashrafe Mortaza(c), Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Liton Das, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Mehidy Hasan, Nazmul Islam, Mohammad Mithun, Mohammad Saifuddin, Abu Hider Rony, Ariful Haque, Imrul Kayes
Windies – Rovman Powell(c), Roston Chase, Devendra Bishoo, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Shimron Hetmyer, Darren Bravo, Marlon Samuels, Shai Hope, Carlos Brathwaite, Keemo Paul, Kieran Powell, Fabian Allen, Kemar Roach, Sunil Ambris, Oshane Thomas
The return of key players from injury may prove vital for a Bangladesh side that lacks star power but has the major benefit of home advantage. They will be boosted by their return and the momentum carried into this series from winning the Test series too. The West Indies, on the other hand, have a relatively young squad and are still searching for the right balance and based on their defeat in the warm-up match, this could be another difficult series for them. They desperately need one or two of their batsmen to fire and get to grips with the pitches and spinners, and it may be a tough start for them here.
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