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The ongoing series between Bangladesh and Zimbabwe may not be attracting much of the coverage from Cricket fans across the globe, but it's an important series for both the sides involved. Bangladesh have already clinched the series by winning the first two matches of the 3-match ODI series, but there's still plenty to play for when the two teams meet in the third and final match of the series which is to be played on 26th October 2018 at Chittagong. Zimbabwe have one final chance to redeem themselves after a series of losses against Pakistan, South Africa, and now Bangladesh. The hosts, on the other hand, will be looking to extend their winning run and clean-sweep the series.
Bangladesh deployed an unchanged unit in the second ODI, but have called up Soumya Sarkar and it will be interesting to see if he is included in the final eleven. The best indicator of their progress in this series has been the runs scored by their openers in the absence of veteran Tamim Iqbal.
Continuing from where he left in the opening one-day international, Imrul Kayes played a steady 90-run knock who was well supported by Liton Das who, too, scored a half-century. Although they both failed to score a century, they certainly did put Bangladesh in a position of strength. However, with just one match to go, we might see some changes in the batting order with the series already done and dusted.
Bowling-wise, Bangladesh look pretty settled as well. Mustafizur and Mehidy Hasan have been impressive in both the games so far and are an important cog in the bowling unit of Bangladesh. They get depth in their bowling department with the presence of Mahmudullah Riyad who can roll his arm when required. Mashrafe has been brilliant as a captain for Bangladesh and it will be interesting to see how he handles the situation of being 2-0 up and test the bench strength with ICC World Cup just around the corner.
Liton Das, Imrul Kayes, Soumya Sarkar, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mohammad Mithun, Mahmudullah, Ariful Haque, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mashrafe Mortaza, Abu Hider, Nazmul Islam.
After a long drought of low-score innings, Brendon Taylor finally found himself amongst the runs, but Zimbabwe still couldn't find themselves on the right side of the result. Zimbabwe lost their 12th consecutive ODI after scoring a reasonable total of 247 in the first innings.
Poor batting was once against responsible for their loss which was helped by indiscipline with the ball. Barring Brendan Taylor, no batsmen were able to score freely which left Zimbabwe high and dry in the middle. Brendan Taylor scored 75 off 73 deliveries which included nine fours and a six.
Unlike what we have seen in recent times, Zimbabwean bowling was outclassed by a massive margin. On a surface which wasn't easy to bat on, Zimbabewan bowlers conceded runs at a rate of close to six an over. Barring Sikandar Raza, no bowler was able to put pressure on the Bangladeshi batsmen as they cruised to the required total with more than five overs to spare. With batting not getting runs and now bowling struggling, it's certainly going to be tough for the visitors.
Hamilton Masakadza, Cephas Zhuwao, BRM Taylor, Sean Williams, Sikandar Raza, Peter Moor, E Chigumbura, WP Masakadza, Donald Tiripano, Kyle Jarvis, Richard Ngarava.
Zimbabwe are having a real forgetful season which they need to get out of quickly. Although the last ODI of the series is a dead rubber, it's of significant importance for the visitors. Bangladesh are likely to test their best strength which leaves Zimbabwe a good chance to register a win here. Bangladeshi top-order is in superb form and will be tough to dislodge in familiar conditions. Therefore, we expect Bangladesh to register yet another win and wrap the series 3-0.