Bangladesh’s performance and the level of cricket that they are playing against a strong opponent like England is commendable.It is the deciding match of the series as Bangladesh face England in the third and final One-Day International (ODI). England, after a lot of dilemma relating to the political unrest in Bangladesh, have arrived in the country to play a series consisting three ODIs and a couple of Tests. The touring party started their campaign with a close save in the first ODI but was soon outwitted by the hosts in the second and is currently squared at 1-1 , making the third ODI all the more interesting. While a series win at this stage will provide Bangladesh with a lot of confidence, England will look not to head into the Test series with a defeat in hand. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Bangladesh vs England, 3rd ODI at Mirpur
Though the matches are being played in their home conditions, Bangladesh’s performance and the level of cricket that they are playing against a strong opponent like England is commendable. Team’s uniform distribution of talent in batting line-up as well as bowling contingent is one of the reasons behind their consistent success. The team has defeated many higher ranked Test teams in the recent past and has emerged as one of the fastest-evolving cricket-playing nation in the game’s history. With the way they have played in the last two matches, they look promising and are expected to maintain team’s overall form in time to come.Bangladesh batting’s biggest name sits atop the order. Tamim Iqbal, is Bangladesh’s most successful batsman ever, is in a tremendous form scoring runs come what may and is a threat to the England bowlers. However, the batsman has not managed to put up a good score in the ongoing series. This ODI will be his last chance to bring in a positive change before the all important Test series with the hosts start. If set, Tamim will be the biggest threat England bowlers will have to deal with. ALSO READ: BAN vs ENG, 3rd ODI: Bayliss urges Buttler to stay away from on-field spats
Other name is star all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan. The cricketer is well in form and scored a crucial 79 in the first ODI to help Bangladesh give a good competition to their opponents. Apart from scoring runs, Shakib contributes with wickets as well as economical overs, which makes him one of the key members of the side. Talking about the team’s batting, the team has the services of names like Imrul Kayes, Sabbir Rahman and Mahmudullah — who are consistent performers. Kayes played a magnificent 112-run knock in the series opener which came for a losing cause. His batting showed the batsman is capable of taking up responsibilities while stars fail to perform. Sabbir has also been another reliable batsman in the limited-overs format and with the final ODI against England, the cricketer will look to show his prowess.
While Mahmudullah looks to be in sync, concerns about Mushfiqur Rahim’s form continue as the batsman has long been out of form and runs. Mushfiqur holds a crucial position of that of team’s wicketkeeper-batsman and being one of the biggest names in the middle-order, needs to get back his form as soon as possible. It will be interesting to see if the team plays Mosaddek Hossain, the new find of the side. Mosaddek had a good time with the bat playing against Afghanistan and is a good option if Bangladesh opts for that one extra batsman down the order. Though the England batting has not looked in its usual flair, the team is full of potential batsmen and to step closer to victory against such a team, Bangladesh must strengthen their batting.
Bowling is yet another integral part of any team and Bangladesh, in the series, have been commendable with the ball. Skipper Mashrafe Mortaza has bagged wickets consistently, maintaining good economy. The performance is sure to inspire the team. Taskin Ahmed’s comeback to the side was a good news in itself and the bowler has been successful with the ball so far and thus Bangladesh have a settled pace-attack which can cause problem for England. Shafiul Islam is the other name that completes the fast bowling contingent. Spin plays an important part when the match is in the subcontinent and Shakib will easily be the biggest bet looking at the form he currently holds. Bangladesh have also tried Nasir Hossain who has been impressive. ALSO READ: Bangladesh vs England, 3rd ODI: Taijul Islam replaces Mosharraf Hossain for series finale
Playing without regular limited-overs skipper Eoin Morgan, England look to have lost their usual rhythm. The team was expected to dominate the series against the ‘minnows’ but the series has so far been evenly poised by all means. Names like Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow have failed to put up the kind of performances expected of them. Stand in skipper Jos Buttler has played a major role putting up crucial runs on the board and getting the innings together. Newbie Ben Duckett’s 60 was a mention-able innings amidst a toppling top-order batting and the batsman is expected to continue scoring runs in the third ODI as well. Ben Stokes scored a hundred in the first ODI. All the performances hint at a strong middle-order but a weak top-order in the condition.England’s pace attack will be their main weapon against Bangladesh who are naturally accustomed playing spin more than pace owing to their home conditions. Young Jake Ball has been the most successful and effective of all, bagging 7 wickets from two matches already. Chris Woakes and David Willey are the other two names who constitute the pace squad. Adil Rashid has utilised the favourable conditions quite well and impressed everyone with his leg spin. Though Moeen Ali has not been able to manage a single wicket so far, his bowling has been commendable, making him an obvious choice as the second spinner.
England need to up their game in order to proclaim their dominance which they gained after the first ODI while Bangladesh, with a balanced performance such as the one in the second ODI, can register a historic victory in front of home crowd.