Zimbabwe needs its batsmen to fire to keep the three-match ODI series alive
Having registered series wins over Pakistan, India and South Africa, Bangladesh is on the verge of another One-Day International series win when it takes on Zimbabwe in the second of the three-match series at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur on Monday (November 9).
The home side cruised to a 145-run win on the back of Musfiqur Rahim’s fourth ODI ton and Shakib Al Hasan’s maiden five-wicket haul as Zimbabwe was bowled out for 128, chasing 274.
Losing wickets up front has been a concern for Zimbabwe. The batting unit hasn't clicked for the fourth time in the last six games, and that will worry the team management and Elton Chigumbura, the captain.
Moreover, a loss here would mean a fourth ODI series defeat in four months, after going down against India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. It managed to win a three-match series against Ireland in October, but missed an opportunity to pull off a series sweep.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh was clinical in its performance in the first match. Shabbir Rehman and Tamim Iqbal got runs, and Shakib and Mashrafe Mortaza got wickets, much to the delight of the passionate Bangladesh fans.
The only blip in the victory was that the decision to send Litton Das to open the batting, in place of Soumya Sarkar, didn’t work. However, it is likely that the Bangladesh think-tank are going to stick with this move for this series.
The loss should make Zimbabwe hungry for a win but, at the moment, Bangladesh starts as the favourite to seal another series. In the end, it will boil down to how Zimbabwe's batsmen tackle Bangladesh's bowling.
Zimbabwe is also due to play two Twenty20 internationals on the limited-overs tour.
Bangladesh: Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Imrul Kayes, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, MahmudullahRiyad, Sabbir Rahman, Nasir Hossain, Arafat Sunny, Jubair Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Al-Amin Hossain, Kamrul Islam.
Zimbabwe: Elton Chigumbura (capt), Sikandar Raza, Regis Chakabva, Chamu Chibhabha, Tendai Chisoro, Graeme Cremer,Craig Ervine, Luke Jongwe, Neville Madziva, Wellington Masakadza, Richmond Mutumbami, Taurai Muzarabani, John Nyumbu, Tinashe Panyangara, Malcolm Waller, Sean Williams.