Date & Time: Saturday, June 08, 15:00 IST
Venue: Sophia Gardens, Cardiff, Wales
Can Bangladesh push England to the edge?
Both England and Bangladesh have earned a big victory over South Africa in their season opener and suffered a heart-breaking loss in their next respective clashes. England wouldn’t worry too much about this loss as this was just a one-off failure from their batting unit except for Joe Root and Jos Buttler. Bangladesh, however need to tighten up a few areas but in truth they have actually exceeded their expectations.
England doesn’t look like they will go for any changes as Mark Wood who replaced Liam Plunkett bowled with real pace and aggression. Bangladesh need better performances from their batting unit and they might look to bring in Liton Das inplace of Mohammad Mithun, however it might be a harsh call. We will have to wait and watch if Mashrafe Mortaza will be dropped for Rubel Hossain after a couple of wicketless outing.
The wicket at Sophia Gardens, Cardiff isn’t like the other high scoring English wicket of late but more like a traditional English wicket where pace bowlers are in the game throughout. Swing and seam movement was seen throughout the match for pace bowlers in the previous 2 games and the batsmen will never feel settled.
Joe Root is a master of maneuvering the field in the middle overs and his consistency is the key for England if they have to go a long way. He has scored 234 runs in his last 5 matches at this venue and has a good record against Bangladesh in the 2 matches he played against them
Shakib Al Hasan is easily the top performer for Bangladesh in this edition of World Cup so far. He has scored a couple of 50+ scores and picked up 3 crucial wickets for them. He has already scored a century in his only appearance at Sophia Gardens, Cardiff and we expect him to make one more big innings today.
Jos Buttler has been the best finisher in ODI cricket for sometime now. His brilliant century against Pakistan might have ended in a loss but would want to make it up with a match winning knock today. He is the highest run scorer at Sophia Gardens, Cardiff. 307 runs in 7 innings at an astounding average of 76.75.
Mahmudullah Riyad is a big game player for Bangladesh and 2 of his 3 career centuries came in the last edition of the World Cup. He averages 57.87 from the 11 innings in World Cup which is a huge boost from his career average of 34.44. He is yet to make a big mark in this edition and who better to do it against than the hosting team England. He has also scored a century in his only innings at this venue.