About the Match
Bangladesh will host India in its first match of the Asia Cup series on Feb 26th at Fatullah; after suffering an ODI series defeat against Sri Lanka last week, the hosts are under tremendous pressure to redeem themselves with a much better performance here. Having been the runner-ups in 2012, when they lost the title to Pakistan, Bangladesh will try to put up a tough fight against the men in blue, who are also eager for redemption after the humiliating series loss to New Zealand earlier this month. Both sides will come out all guns blazing and it will be interesting to see which team succeeds in the end.
There have been a number of changes in the ODI side after the series loss to the Lankans; Tamim Iqbal will be rested due to injury whereas Mahmudullah will be replaced by Imrul Kayes, who had a good run during the test series recently. Shakib Al Hasan, who is in tremendous form, has been suspended for this match and will re-join the squad after the upcoming contest; in the bowling department, Abdur Razzak will be back in action and though he missed the series against Sri Lanka, he will lead the spin attack here. Ziaur Rahman and Rubel Hossain are expected to support Razzak with their pace bowling. Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim, Naeem Islam and Nasir Hossain look pretty good in the middle order and will need to strengthen the innings if the top order fails to fire. Shamsur Rahman and Anamul Haque had a mixed run in the recent matches and will need to be more consistent with their performance here. Overall, the team has to sharpen its skills and be at the top of their game if they want to give a tough fight to the Indians.
Virat Kohli will don the captain’s hat with Dhoni being rested for the series; this is his chance to prove his leadership skills yet again and with a good performance against the Kiwis, Kohli will be eager to do well for the team. Dinesh Karthik returns to the squad as wicket-keeper batsman and a lot is expected from him in the middle order; Cheteshwar Pujara, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma will lead the batting line-up and with youngsters like Ajinkya Rahane, who earned praise during the recent away series and Stuart Binny, who is a good all-rounder, the team is filled with a good set of talented players. The bowling squad comprises of Mohammad Shami, who has proved his worth time and again, Varun Aaron who will support with the pace attack, spinners Ashwin and Jadeja along with Amit Mishra, Ishwar Pandey and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. While the conditions here are favourable to the team’s established strengths in batting and bowling, the players will need to motivate themselves to overcome the recent defeats and rise up to the challenge ahead.
Team India has been stumbling with its performance in recent series away from home but playing in the sub-continent will definitely make things easier for the players, who are eager to go back to their winning ways. Bangladesh also has not been in the best of its form and with several changes in the squad, the team needs to bond together and put up a good performance. While the hosts will put up a fierce battle, India’s young brigade looks confident to pull off a win here.
India, 1.25 @ Titan Bet