World Twenty20: Bangladesh team preview – Rising side look to continue momentum

Team preview and prediction for Bangladesh in the Super 10 stage of the World T20 championships.

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It is tempting to see this moment, indeed this last 18 months, as the coming of age of Bangladesh cricket. It is not untrue either: their performances and results in that time speak unmistakably of an evolution.

They were outstanding in the Asia Cup, demonstrably a better side than both Sri Lanka and Pakistan. That, more than their results last year, is important. Last year, they became a very good ODI side. This year, they seem to be getting their Twenty20 cricket into shape.

Still, this will be a major test, and not only because the group is so tough. Much of Bangladesh’s progress, after all, has been in familiar home conditions (the World Cup quarter-final run excepted). On slightly different surfaces and crucially without the teeming crowds they so visibly feed off, how will Mashrafe Mortaza and his men cope? That is the question that will define their campaign.

Coach Chandika Haturusinghe

Tournament History

2007 Eliminated in Super 8s

2009 Eliminated in group stage

2010 Eliminated in group stage

2012 Eliminated in group stage

2014 Eliminated in Super 10s

Match-winner: The pace bowlers

A big part of Bangladesh’s rise is down to the emergence of pace bowlers, such as Rubel Hossain, Taskin Ahmed and the prodigy, Mustafizur Rahman. They are without Hossain, possibly Mustazifur and Taskin’s action has been reported, so the burden — for now — falls on Tamim Iqbal. He signed off the group stages with the first hundred by a Bangladesh player in the format and has been in stunning form since the Pakistan Super League. If he fires, it will be difficult to stop him.

New face: Soumya Sarkar

He is not exactly a new face, given that he has now been around for a year and played a World Cup, but Soumya Sarkar could turn out to be some batsman for Bangladesh. He has not yet strung together the scores in any format that a man of his capabilities should but that is surely a matter of time — and what runs he does score, he does with rare grace.

Key match: v Pakistan, Kolkata, March 16 — One venue where Bangladesh might feel right at home, given the shared history, culture and geography with the province of Bengal. They have tonked Pakistan in ODIs and T20s over the last year and if they start by doing so here, it could spark their campaign.

Predicted finish: Eliminated in Super 10s

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