Captain: Mushfiqur RahimCoach: Shane JurgensenWT20 Best: Super Eights exit, 2007
OverviewThe Tigers should have a better track record in this format than they do. They’ve got a number of players who can win a game, but hardly ever manage for those players to do well in the same match. As such, they’ve only won one of their past 10 T20s, spanning nearly two years.
They have an annoying habit of getting into a strong position and then chucking it away, thus losing the game rather than the other team winning it outright. Added to their recent Asia Cup disaster, where they lost all their ODIs (including to Afghanistan) they have an uphill battle to make the home fans proud again.
Key BatsmanOpening batsman Anamul Haque was impressive in the Asia Cup, earning a spot in our team of the tournament thanks to the century against Afghanistan, another half ton and a 49. He was good behind the stumps too. Whether this form will transfer to the shortest format remains to be seen, but will be imperative to the Tigers’ success as he’ll need to set a solid platform, and quickly. He’s only played three T20Is, and averages nearly 35.
Key BowlerThe clear choice here is all-rounder Shakib-al-Hasan. The crotch-grabbing veteran is one of the aforementioned match winners, and is Bangladesh’s top current T20 wicket-taker. He averages under 20 with the ball in the format, and along with Sohag Gazi will prove the most threatening when the batsmen are on the charge.
Likely BenchwarmerTough to say, given recent form, but we’ll go with fast bowler Farhad Reza. In the T20 series against Sri Lanka, the supposed all rounder failed to reach double figures and took no wickets. He averages over 52 with the ball and under 10 with the bat, so we’re not going to put money on him making our team of the tournament in April.
Cricket365’s PredictionThe Tigers still have to play qualifying matches to be sorted into the two groups later on in the month. They’ll do the job, provided they don’t crumble against Afghanistan again, but how well they’ll do later on is a mystery. We’re not punting them to make it past the group stage, mind you.
They Said: “As the tournament is at home, we will have the support but there shouldn’t be too much expectation. I have heard people say, ‘Let the cup stay at home.’ But I think we have to tone that down a bit. Please support us, the team will do better. But everyone has to take the result sportingly. Too much expectation does put undue pressure on us.” – all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan.
Squad: Mushfiqur Rahim, Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque, Shamsur Rahman, Shakib Al Hasan, Mominul Haque, Nasir Hossain, Sabbir Rahman, Mohammad Mahmudullah, Abdur Razzak, Sohag Gazi, Mashrafe Mortaza, Farhad Reza, Rubel Hossain, Al-Amin Hossain.
Fixtures16 March: v Afghanistan, Mirpur18 March: v Nepal, Chittagong20 March: v Hong Kong, Chittagong