Ban v SL: Tigers eye historic series win over Lions

After a convincing win in the first game of the three-match series against Sri Lanka on Sunday, Bangladesh are eyeing to seal the series on Tuesday at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium.

Bangladesh have previously played eight series against the Lankans but failed to win any of them. But this time around, Tigers are in a good position to seal the series thanks to an inexperienced ODI side of The Lions.

It was Bangladesh’s first win after losing 10 matches across the formats. Their last victory had come in ODI against West Indies earlier this year.

Mushfiqur Rahim, the wicketkeeper-batsman, was the architect of Bangladesh’s 33-run win in the series opener. He scored 84 runs after the team lost four wickets inside 100 runs. Captain Tamim Iqbal and allrounder Mahmudullah Riyad also hit a fifty each.

Tigers posted 257 runs for six after winning the toss.

Bangladesh’s off-spinner Mehidy Hasan Miraz continued to shine as an ODI bowler and bagged four wickets while Msutafizur Rahman, the left-arm seamer, scalped three.

For Sri Lanka, number eight Wanindu Hasaranga offered a real scare for the Tigers, scoring 74 off 60 balls. Had he batted for a few overs, Bangladesh might have lost the game. He was removed by Mohammad Saifuddin.

Ahead of the second match of the series, Bangladesh are sweating over the form of Liton Das and Mohammad Mithun who suffered a duck each in the first game. Liton now has three ducks in ODIs in his last seven games while Mithun failed to reach two-digit scores five times in last 10 ODIs.

Both of them or at least one might be axed from the best XI in the next game. In that case, Soumya Sarkar might find a place in the team.

Before the series, Bangladesh’s head coach Russell Domingo hinted that he likes to continue backing Liton as he has been going through a bad time. According to Domingo, Liton is a quality player who needs support in a bad patch.

“I have a lot of faith in Liton, who I think is a quality player. He needs a bit of luck. I don’t think there’s a question mark in his ability. All players go through five or six games when they don’t do well. I think the challenge is to make sure you keep backing those players. I think a big score is just around the corner,” Domingo told the media in a pre-series press conference.

Bangladesh introduced Afif Hossain at number seven in the first game. Scoring 27 off 22 balls, he ensured that he would get more chances at that position.

Bangladesh’s probable XI in the 2nd game: Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mohammad Mithun/Soumya Sarkar, Mahmudullah Riyad, Afif Hossain, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Taskin Ahmed and Mustafizur Rahman.

Source: United News of Bangladesh