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Competitive Afghanistan set to lock horns with battered Bangladesh
Asia Cup 2018

Competitive Afghanistan set to lock horns with battered Bangladesh

Afghanistan and Bangladesh will be looking to give their best shot somehow keep themselves alive for the tournament. Bangladesh have had batting collapses in the last two of their games. They were thumped by 7 wickets by India in their first Super Four encounter. Before that, Afghanistan bowlers got the better of their batsmen as they struggled to spend some time out in the middle before doing any sort of damage. Poor scheduling, injuries and form has all gone against them.

Afghanistan have definitely punched above their weight and their combinations haven’t been wrong. However, the ineffectiveness of their seamers seemed will be a concern for Phil Simmons and co. Gulbadin Naib and Aftab Alam did not get a lot of nip under lights and that is their only chink in the armour. The likes of Ihsanullah Janat, Asghar Afghan, Rahmat Shah and Hashmatullah Shahidi have had a decent run in the tournament and they’ll be carrying the batting department.

Bangladesh have been having problems at the top of the batting order with both Liton Das and Nazmul Hossain being unable to enter double digits after injury to Tamim Iqbal. Against India, the entire batting order collapsed mainly due to poor shot selection. They’ll have to be watchful against the spin trio of Afghanistan which has been the most threatening part of their bowling. Bangladesh’s bowling has looked ineffective in this tournament. Shakib Al Hasan has had a decent tournament with the ball but he has to make things up with his bat being a senior player in the side.

Players to watch out for

Rashid Khan (Afghanistan)

Rashid’s slightly different grip from conventional leg break bowlers makes him an incredibly difficult bowler to deal with. Backed up by the variations and a quick action, this makes life even harder for the batsmen. So far, Rashid is the leading wicket taker in the tournament and Bangladesh batsmen have to come up with a method to deal with him.

Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh)

Shakib has long been the pinnacle of the Bangladesh side, and his performances have been instrumental in their rise as an international cricketing force. There was much talk regarding whether he would play, but having been declared fit to go, fans will be looking for an action packed display from him.

Probable XI

Bangladesh

Liton Das, Soumya Sarkar/Nazmul Hossain, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim(w), Mohammad Mithun/Mominul Haque, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mehidy Hasan, Mashrafe Mortaza(c), Rubel Hossain/Abu Hider, Mustafizur Rahman

Afghanistan

Mohammad Shahzad(w), Ihsanullah Janat, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Asghar Afghan(c), Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Aftab Alam, Mujeeb Ur Rahman