The expectations of Bangladesh Cricket have soared sky high after spectacular performance of Bangladesh against world champions of both the white ball formats. None in the widest of dream envisioned Bangladesh achieving comprehensive white wash in T20 series.
Ireland, a minnow in world cricket is poised to start their important cricket tour from tomorrow at the city of tea gardens Sylhet.
Their tour comprises of three ODIs, three T20 matches and a test match. Having played so well against England and Bangladesh it is general expectation that Bangladesh will prevail over Ireland in all the formats.
But from impressive performances of the Irish teams in internationals and bilateral contests in the recent past there is possibility that Ireland may prove hard nut to crack at least in the two formats of white ball cricket.
For Bangladesh it will be an acid test for proving that the performance against England was not a flash in the pan. They have to establish consistency.
The tour will start with an ODI series at Sylhet. ODI is the forte of Bangladesh. If Bangladesh play true to its potential, they should win the series with ease and should even achieve series white wash.
But well-prepared Ireland must not be taken lightly. Ireland will also be hungry for winning and giving good account of them. There has not been anu international match at Sylhet in the recent past.
Hence the nature of the wicket cannot be guessed accurately. Bangladesh with vastly improved pace attack and as usual very strong spinners definitely has an edge. Remember unlike England, Ireland does not have reputation at stake. They will go all out as they have nothing to lose. The contest will be very different in nature .
Bangladesh Squad: Tamim Iqbal (Captain) , Rony Talukdar, Litton K Das, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Towhid Hridoy, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Yasir Ali Rabby, Afif Hossain ,Mehedy Hasan Miraj, Nasum Ahmed , Taskin Ahmed , Hasan Mahmud, Ebadat Hossain and Mustafizur Rahman.
Ireland: Andy Balbirnie (Captain)Harry Tector, Gareth Delany, Paul Sterling, Curtis Campher, Matthew Humphreys, Lorcan Tucker, Stephen Doheny, Mark Adair, George Dockrell, Graham Hume, Andy McBrine, Benjamin White and Joshua Little.
The major change that Ireland will observe a completely new shape of Bangladesh pace attack. Any visiting team all along used to worry about quality spin attack on slow low turning tracks. Now nursed by white lightening Alan Donald Bangladesh has a match winning pace attack. It has the rich resources of playing three match winning penetrative pacers and choose from a group of four or even five.
Bangladesh pacers now not only bowl fast but also bowls accurately on length. Taskin earned the respect of English batsmen. Hasan Mahmud rocked with his deadly Yorkers and variations at death. Mustafiz recovered his subtle skill. Add to those skills of Ebadat.
We are not mentioning how Shakib, Mehidy and Nasum can squeeze. Vastly superior bowling attack and new look sharp and agile fielding will put Bangladesh ahead.
The attitude of Bangladesh top order has changed for the better. Addition of Rony Talukdar and Towhid Hridoy has given new dimension. Nazmul Shanto continues to excel, Litton has recovered his touch in the last T20 match.
Mushfique and Shakib will add skills and experience. I am not sure it fair giving rest to experienced Mahmudullah. With whatever Afif and Yasir produced they are yet competent for stepping into the shoes of Mahmudullah. Bangladesh sill needs power hitting in the last slog overs.
Most of the Irish players play in England. They have seasoned players like Paul Sterling, Andy Balburnie, George Dockrell Curtis Campher and some bright youngsters. It will be a huge learning lesson for them. If they are not overawed by the situation, they may spring some surprise.
Bangladesh must not take things for granted. ODI series will direct which way the other format will be having.
Bangladesh team must ignore whatever has happened off the ground. Professionals must not be flustered about these. Let us look for interesting encounters
BDST: 1352 HRS, MAR 17, 2023