Coming off two defeats in as many matches, both West Indies and Bangladesh will be aiming to open their account in the Super 12s of the T20 World Cup when they meet in Sharjah on Friday. Bangladesh and West Indies are currently placed fifth and sixth respectively in Group A, and they have to get over their losses quickly if they are to advance to the semi-finals.
Batting has been a concern for both teams. After their batting blow-out in the first match against England, West Indies bettered their 55 by 88 runs against South Africa. However, that was also not enough to notch up a win. In a line-up consisting of Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Shimron Hetmyer, Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell and Dwayne Bravo in the middle order, Lendl Simmons' 16 off 35 against England hurt the team and gave others little time to recover. Though captain Kieron Pollard did not blame Simmons alone for West Indies' batting meltdown, he admitted that the team have to bat as a unit to move up in the points table.
For Bangladesh, they need to fire in all departments. Despite posting a competitive total of 171 for 4 against Sri Lanka, they lost the game due to sloppy fielding and poor bowling. In the second game, Bangladesh toiled against England with both and ball as they lost the match by eight wickets after posting a below-par 124 for 9. They will be hoping that the likes of Mohammad Naim, who hit two fifties in four matches, and the experienced Mushfiqur Rahim come good against the defending champions.
(last five completed matches)
West Indies LLLWL
In the spotlight
Nurul Hasan hasn't quite hit big scores in the T20 World Cup after a good domestic performance and a couple of promising knocks against Zimbabwe and Australia. The wicketkeeper-batter will be looking to find his groove sooner than later.
Evin Lewis kept West Indies afloat when Lendl Simmons struggled at the other end against South Africa. Lewis struck six sixes and three fours in his 35-ball 56. The innings reflected his form and state of mind. The team desperately needs him to carry forward this form in their three remaining matches.
Bangladesh can think about a shuffle in the batting line-up. Soumya Sarkar's lack of form isn't the only reason for their top-order problems, while picking young Shamim Hossain at this point would be throwing him at the deep end.
Bangladesh (probable): 1 Mohammad Naim, 2 Liton Das, 3 Shakib Al Hasan, 4 Mushfiqur Rahim, 5 Mahmudullah (capt), 6 Afif Hossain, 7 Nurul Hasan (wk), 8 Mahedi Hasan, 9 Shoriful Islam, 10 Nasum Ahmed, 11 Mustafizur Rahman
West Indies have Roston Chase and Andre Fletcher as other batting options, while Jason Holder was recently drafted in to replace the injured Obed McCoy.
West Indies: (probable): 1 Lendl Simmons, 2 Evin Lewis, 3 Nicholas Pooran (wk), 4 Chris Gayle, 5 Kieron Pollard (capt), 6 Andre Russell, 7 Shimron Hetmyer, 8 Dwayne Bravo, 9 Hayden Walsh, 10 Akeal Hosein, 11 Ravi Rampaul
Stats and trivia
Simmons' 16 off 35 balls is the slowest innings by a West Indian in T20Is, among those who faced at least 30 balls.
Bangladesh's 6.23 average run-rate in the powerplay is the second-lowest in T20Is in 2021 among teams who have played at least 10 matches.
"We speak about the batting failure. We are unable to score runs in the first six overs, which is keeping us behind the game. We are also losing wickets (in the powerplay). Everyone wants to do well but we are not able to do it."
Bangladesh left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed on their T20 World Cup campaign