The Bangladesh national team is back in action after a highly successful bout of BPL 2019 as they begin their preparations for the World Cup 2019 with the Kiwis awaiting them for the first ODI in Napier on Wednesday.
While New Zealand themselves have unearthed a few problems of their own with the axing of Colin Munro and Ish Sodhi, Bangladesh is without star all-rounder, Shakib Al Hasan who fractured his finger during the BPL.
The hosts enter into the series as firm favorites with the presence of Kane Williamson and Trent Boult in their side but Bangladesh are capable of springing a surprise upon them, for instance, the Champions Trophy 2017 league fixture.
With the Napier pitch looking good for a highly competitive match, will the Kane Williamson and co. strike first in this much-anticipated clash or will it be the Tigers?
Squads to choose from
Kane Williamson (C), Martin Guptill, Henry Nicholls, Ross Taylor, Tom Latham, James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Mitchell Santner, Todd Astle, Trent Boult, Matt Henry, and Lockie Ferguson.
Mashrafe Mortaza (C), Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammed Mithun, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah Riyad, Sabbir Rahman, Mohammed Saifuddin, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Nayeem Hasan, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Shafiul Islam and Mominul Haque.
Playing XI Updates
After losing their last ODI series to India, New Zealand will be hoping to make amends with a solid show against the sub-continent side. Martin Guptill should recover from his injury just in time to make the side while Lockie Ferguson will partner Trent Boult and Tim Southee in the pace attack.
It is a toss-up between De Grandhomme and Astle for a spot in the side with either of them in decent form.
Possible XI: Guptill, Nicholls, Williamson (C), Taylor, Latham(WK), Neesham, De Grandhomme, Santner, Southee, Boult, and Ferguson.
Shakib Al Hasan’s absence has already dented the Bangladeshi side who lost their only practice match a couple of days ago. Sabbir Rahman or Mohammed Mithun should take up Shakib’s place in the side with Rahim and Mahmadullah key to the batting.
Tamim is fresh off a 141* in the BPL 2019 final and would be the prize scalp for the Kiwis. Mustafizur and Rubel will be joined by Saifuddin and Mashrafe to round off the attack.
Possible XI: Tamim, Liton, Sarkar, Rahim(WK), Mahmudullah, Sabbir/Mithun, Saifuddin, Mashrafe, Mehidy, Mustafizur and Rubel.
Fantasy Tips and Suggestions
Wicket-keeper: Tom Latham and Mushfiqur Rahim are the available options for the match and considering both of their recent forms, either of them wouldn’t be a bad option to go along with. Mushfiqur Rahim is coming off a successful BPL season and without Shakib to complement him in the middle order, he would have to take up the bulk of the responsibility.
Batsmen: Kane Williamson hasn’t been in the best forms of late with the captain not able to convert his fifties into hundreds. Along with either of Ross Taylor or Henry Nicholls, Williamson would be more than a handy option to have in the side. Tamim Iqbal’s form makes him a must-have in the side while the likes of Soumya Sarkar and Liton Das could also be opted for as well.
All-rounders: Mahmudullah Riyad has many happy memories against the Kiwis with a century in both the World Cup 2015 and Champions Trophy 2017 fresh amongst the Bangladeshi supporters. The all-rounder is an invaluable asset to the team with his off-spin being an added boost and is to be chosen without any hesitation alongside Jimmy Neesham.
Bowlers: With the third pacer yet to be identified by the NZ management, Lockie Ferguson and Trent Boult are more than just safe picks to choose with their recent form suggesting their selection too. Two of Bangladesh’s pace quartet would suffice in rounding off a well-balanced fantasy side.
Captain: Kane Williamson is the obvious choice with the stylish batsmen’s knack for scoring runs at home well known to one and all. The NZ captain is due for a big score and will hope to make this opportunity count before he takes a rest in the latter part of the series. The other options include Henry Nicholls and Tamim Iqbal with their recent form indicating a big performance on Wednesday.
Fantasy Suggestion #1: Tom Latham(WK), Kane Williamson, Henry Nicholls, Soumya Sarkar, Tamim Iqbal, Mahmudullah Riyad, James Neesham, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman. Captain: Kane Williamson.
Fantasy Suggestion #2: Mushfiqur Rahim (WK), Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mashrafe Mortaza, Mustafizur Rahman, Trent Boult and Lockie Ferguson. Captain: Henry Nicholls