A tournament of firsts continues for Bangladesh at the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022 on Friday.
- Match 25: Bangladesh Women v Australia Women
- Basin Reserve, Wellington
- Friday 25 March, 11:00 Local Time
The Tigers are competing at their first Cricket World Cup and picked up their first-ever CWC win with victory over Pakistan.
And now it’s time for Nigar Sultana’s side to face the world’s top-ranked team Australia for the first time ever in ODI cricket, and for only the second time in any format.
It’s a daunting task, but Bangladesh have approached their entire campaign in New Zealand with a positive can-do attitude, and the prospect of facing the six-time world champions Australia is no exception.
“Of course, Australia are the strongest team and so far they are in a very good position in the tournament,” Sultana said. “But still I think we can fight them very well.
“Our bowling unit is doing very well. So what we will do and what we need to work the most on is to fix our batting unit.
“It turns out that bowlers tried to restrict the opponents to a decent score in all the last matches we played, but somehow we couldn't support them with our batting unit because the top order collapsed.
“Now we have discussed among ourselves how we can play or plan so that our batting unit can come back to the track.”
For Australia, this is a final opportunity to hone their game before the knockout stage, with six wins from six making them the first team at the tournament to seal a spot in the semis.
“I saw Ash Gardner and Meg (Lanning) comment the other day that we're looking for the perfect game, but ultimately we're just looking to improve each and every game in different areas… and we do have a bit to improve on still with the ball I guess,” Australia’s Jess Jonassen said.
“It's exciting for them (Bangladesh) to be a part of their first 50-over World Cup. And I mean, for me personally, I'm a bit of a cricket snuff. So I've been watching almost every game of the World Cup and I think yeah, I've taken a bit about them from that.”
Australia Squad: Meg Lanning (c), Rachael Haynes (vc), Darcie Brown, Nic Carey, Ash Gardner, Grace Harris, Alyssa Healy, Jess Jonassen, Alana King, Tahlia McGrath, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Annabel Sutherland, Amanda-Jade Wellington. Travelling reserves: Georgia Redmayne, Heather Graham
Bangladesh Squad: Nigar Sultana (c), Salma Khatun, Rumana Ahmed, Fargana Hoque, Jahanara Alam, Shamima Sultana, Fahima Khatun, Ritu Moni, Murshida Khatun, Nahida Akter, Sharmin Akhter, Lata Mondal, Sobhana Mostary, Fariha Trisna, Suraiya Azmin, Sanjida Akter Meghla
Alyssa Healy: There's a reason why Healy is rated as the best ODI batter in the world on the MRF Tyres ICC Women's Batting Rankings, with her ability to score quickly at the start of an innings an important feature of the 31-year-old's game. Healy has three ODI centuries and 15 half-centuries to her name for Australia, but it's her impressive strike rate (98.22) in 50-over cricket that particularly stands out.
Nigar Sultana: Much was expected of the Bangladesh captain with the bat and behind the stumps and it will come as no surprise if the 24-year-old shines against the best team at the tournament. Sultana has already scored an international century in 50-over cricket and has shown the ability to compete well with the best attacks in the world on previous occasions.
CWC22 DREAM11 FANTASY WATCH
Captaincy Pick – Rachael Haynes
Australia’s vice-captain started her tournament with a bang, scoring a magnificent 130 off 131 balls with 14 boundaries and one maximum in her first match against England. Two tidy 30s and a brilliant 83* against West Indies saw the 35-year-old continue her brilliant form through the group stage, and her 43 against India strengthened her position as one of the World Cup’s leading run-scorers so far.
Must have – Meg Lanning
Captain Meg Lanning scored 86 runs with seven boundaries and one maximum in that great partnership with Haynes against England in the opener, but there was better to come from the skipper. Her 97 against India was outstanding, and she followed that up with a destructive 135* against South Africa to become the tournament's leading run-scorer and showcase her ability to score big against the very best opponents.
This is one of seven matches to be held at the Basin Reserve in Wellington over the course of the tournament.
An established international-standard ground, 'The Basin' will also be the site of the first semi-final.
All eight teams at the tournament are playing each other across seven rounds in a league format.
The top four teams in the standings after the conclusion of the Group Stage will qualify for the semi-finals, which will be held in the final week of March.
This is Australia’s final group stage fixture:
- 25 March v Bangladesh
Bangladesh’s remaining tournament fixtures:
- 25 March v Australia
27 March v England
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