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|Shakib Al Hasan||9.0||0||55||1||6.11|
|Nazmul Hossain Shanto||6||18||0||0||33.33|
|Shakib Al Hasan||0||2||0||0||0.00|
|Mujib Ur Rahman||10.0||0||35||1||3.50|
It's not even a week since we witnessed Afghanistan defeat Bangladesh in Asia Cup 2018 and there they are meeting again on 23rd September. Both Afghanistan and Bangladesh started their super four campaign on a losing note and they both go into the game in a do-or-die situation. Although a win here will not ascertain a final spot in the Asia Cup, but a loss will send the losing team crashing out of the competition. Going by the head to head, the two teams are pretty level. Out of the six meeting they've had in One Day Internationals, the two teams have won three matches each. Considering that the survival of both the teams in the tournament depends on the outcome of this upcoming fixture, both the teams are going to come in all guns blazing.
Afghanistan's play style has resembled a lot like the way it was played in the last decade with the top order keeping the wickets in hand and taking the attack to the opposition in the slog overs. This approach has reaped good rewards for them thus far as they defeated Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and came close to defeating Pakistan in their first super four encounters.
Rahmat Shah and Hasmatullah Shahidi have done exceedingly well since the beginning of this tournament with 118 and 192 runs respectively to their name. Shahidi missed his century by a narrow margin of three runs against Pakistan. Mohammad Shahzad has got off to starts but has failed to convert those into a big one which could be a concern for the management. They bat deep with the likes of Nabi, Naib, and Rashid Khan down the order which is always a blessing in any form of cricket.
Clearly, Afghanistan's bowling revolves around their spinners with Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman taking the center stage. Nabi, despite not having any mysteries about him, deceives batsmen with his accuracy and natural variations he gets from the surface. The absence of an express bowler in their lineup found them off-guard in their match against Pakistan which will be a matter to ponder upon for the team management. Despite that, they have a pretty good bowling attack which is capable of strangling any opposition with the plethora of options they have, especially in spinner friendly conditions.
M Shahzad, Ihsanullah, R Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Samiullah Shenwari, Asghar Stanikzai, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Aftab Alam, Mujeeb Ur Rahman.
The Tigers suffered a major blow in their opening encounter of the tournament where Tamim mishandled a bouncer from Malinga and fractured his wrist. The absence of an in-form or experienced opener is clearly telling on Bangladesh as they're repeatedly failing to get a good start. Consequently, they were outplayed in all the three departments of the game in their subsequent fixtures, against Afghanistan and India.
With Tamim Iqbal injured, the onus will be on the likes of Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah, and Mushfique Rahim to do the bulk of the scoring for the Tigers. Mohammad Mithun looked good in the first match, against Sri Lanka, but he hasn't done much since that match-saving knock.
With batsmen not scoring enough runs against India, there weren't many bowlers could do. Mortaza, Al Hasan, and Mustafizur Rahman are the most potent bowlers of their attack and will have to come good against Afghanistan. Shakib was brilliant in his last outing against Afghanistan and he will be looking to produce yet another brilliant spell of bowling.
Liton Das, Imrul Kayes, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Mohammad Mithun, Mahmudullah, Mashrafe Mortaza, Mehidy Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman, Nazmul Islam.
Despite the dew factor, chasing has been difficult whenever the team batting first has scored in excess of 240 batting first in this tournament. This is a high-pressure game and runs on the board can add to the pressure. Therefore, we expect the team winning the toss to bat first.
Read our guide on toss predictions to learn how we analyze and come up with our tips.
The dry heat of Abu Dhabi has really tested the fitness of the players with temperatures soaring above 40 degrees. The surface has been decent to bat on with batting becoming easier later in the day due to the dew factor. Regardless, spinners have had a huge role to play in the tournament thus far and it won't be any different in this game as well. The team batting first will be looking to put at least 250 on the board which isn't going to be easy to chase down.
The last time these two teams played, Afghanistan thrashed Bangladesh by a massive margin, but Bangladesh then played more of a second-string side with the likes of Mustafizur and Mushfiqur rested. Having said that, Afghanistan played exceedingly well in that match and have improved with every passing match. Considering their performance in the tournament so far and the performance of their spinners, Afghanistan go in as favorites to win this match and knock the Tigers out of the competition.
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