Just two weeks and a semi-final line-up such as this one was little expected. One-half of it was expected to come through but the wonderful other half has given a country, where cricket-craziness is probably at its peak, much joy. For most Bangladesh fans, just getting to the semi-final of the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 is a victory in itself. Bricklane, in London, also referred to as Banglatown, has a host of people eager for their team to beat India. There will be a party on those very streets when it happens, they say.
The last time Bangladesh beat Pakistan in England, there were people partying all night on the streets, say a few who remember. There are a string of curry houses on the lane. They are famous for their Indian food but it’s all owned by Bangladeshis. The curry houses are a rage that has caught on in the UK thanks to the craving of spicy food by late-night dwellers after hours of partying, goes a theory. If it’s spice they are after then there is much to be had between these two teams, particularly in ICC tournaments.
Mauka Mauka India vs Bangladesh Champions Trophy 2017 Chota Semi Final
In the 2015 World Cup and in the 2016 World T20, they were knocked out after defeats to India. In 2007, a defeat against Bangladesh cost India dear as the latter were knocked out early. There have been accusations raging in the aftermath of Bangladesh’s last two defeats even from those heading the Board of India’s power. Bangladesh makes no bones about seeing themselves as the small boys challenging the big ones. It’s exactly how many outsiders see it too.
Mashrafe Mortaza, like some other captains, believes that the pressure will be on India in the semi-final. It’s an attitude that has helped his team grow step by step. Every victory is seen as a bonus, but they have been able to carry forward the confidence from it to the successive games. So much so that victory for Bangladesh is no longer seen as just a one-off. Mortaza credits a collective change in approach from not dropping players to coaching methods. It has been an immensely commendable journey so far. And this could be the biggest match of their lives. And as much as the players distance themselves from the talks about the rivalry, it is what abounds outside.
India has had an up-down-up journey to the semi-finals but will comfortably start as the favorites. Their only loss in the tournament, against Sri Lanka, will be something that Bangladesh could build upon. Taking the attack to India’s bowlers comes with its own disadvantages but Bangladesh coming in with a ‘nothing to lose’ attitude might just help them hurt India’s gameplan like Sri Lanka did.
When: 15 June, 2017 at 10:30 AM Local Time
Where: Edgbaston, Birmingham
What to expect: Predictions are for clear weather. And a fresh pitch at Edgbaston promises to offer a lot to the batsmen.
India: The combination that won against South Africa is something that has pleased the skipper Virat Kohli immensely. There are no injury concerns as well and there are no indications that suggest a change in their playing eleven.
Probable XI: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah
Bangladesh: They have mixed their combinations around a little in the previous games but Bangladesh too are likely to stick with a winning combination, barring any injuries ahead of the game.
Probable XI: Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mashrafe Mortaza, Taskin Ahmed, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman
Stats and Trivia
– This will be Yuvraj Singh’s 300th ODI. He is set to become the fifth Indian after Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Mohammad Azharuddin and Sourav Ganguly to get to the milestone.
– Yuvraj Singh’s strike rate of 87 is the fourth highest for any player after 299 ODIs, behind Wasim Akram, Sanath Jayasuriya and Shahid Afridi.
– India has won three out of the four Champions Trophy semifinals they played. Their only loss came against West Indies in 1998.
– Shikhar Dhawan (634) is 32 runs short of going past Sourav Ganguly’s (665) record for most runs for India in the Champions Trophy.
– Shakib Al Hasan needs 32 more runs to become the second Bangladesh player to reach the milestone of 5000 runs in ODIs.
“His contribution to Indian cricket has been outstanding. He’s been a total match-winner for India, won us so many big tournaments and big series, and this is just a testimony to the kind of talent he possesses. You obviously need to have all those things in place to be able to play 300 games for India, and I congratulate him. I wish him all the very best, and hopefully, he can play a lot more for us and get in those match-winning performances all over again, and I hope tomorrow is a special one for him – Virat Kohli on Yuvraj Singh as the latter gets set to play his 300th ODI
“Look, it’s different who is respecting you and not. But as a team, we are trying to improve our cricket. As a team the last two, three years we are changing things a lot, especially in the dressing rooms and into the ground. So we are trying our best – Mashrafe Mortaza on earning oppositions’ respect.
India (From): Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli(c), Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni(w), Hardik Pandya, Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami
Bangladesh (From): Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Sabbir Rahman, Mushfiqur Rahim(w), Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mashrafe Mortaza(c), Taskin Ahmed, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Imrul Kayes, Sunzamul Islam, Mehedi Hasan, Shafiul Islam<