BAN v AUS, 2nd Test Preview: Australia seek vengeance whilst the hosts aim for a historic series win

BAN v AUS, 2nd Test Preview: Australia seek vengeance whilst the hosts aim for a historic series win

It's needless to say that this encounter in Chittagong will prove to be a cliff hanger considering how well the first game spanned out.

Bangladesh
Bangladesh. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

It was a colossal victory at Dhaka a few days ago for the home side as defeating Australia in white jerseys was something which remained too far fetched. But the long awaited dream did come true as Shakib Al Hasan steered the to one of the most thrilling victories of all time and that gifted a priceless 1-0 lead to the hosts.

This was a horrendous start for Australia after the payments fiasco was put to bed. Everyone expected the Kangaroos to boss the Tigers but things happened the other way round. There was nothing demoralizing though for the Aussies as few of their batters did get some runs, specifically David Warner, who always had a nightmare on Asian tracks.

Shakib Al Hasan’s 10-wicket haul and his half-century in the first innings shadowed the contribution of Tamim Iqbal, but it’d be fair enough to say he’s the backbone of their batting line up. Few individual flashes of brilliance were good enough to round off things the other day but Australians ain’t a unit who will let such things repeat.

If the Mushfiqur Rahim led side aim to register a series win against the mighty Aussies, they should put a collective show of perseverance and courage. They commit one tiny mistake and the visitors will make them pay a heavy penalty. A series which many assumed to be a dead-rubber duel has now turned an enthralling banter and quite certainly, the entire fraternity will watch this game eagerly.

Probable XI

Bangladesh

Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque, Mushfiqur Rahim (c & wk), Shakib Al Hasan, Sabbir Rahman, Nasir Hossain, Mehidy Hasan, Taijul Islam, Shafiul Islam

Australia

Matt Renshaw, David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Hilton Cartwright, Steven Smith (c), Glenn Maxwell, Peter Handscomb (wk), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Steve O’Keefe, Nathan Lyon

Focus will be on

Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh)

Tamim Iqbal will be hogging a lot of lime light and the reasons are self-explanatory.The southpaw from Chittagong is rated as one of the greatest cricketers of their country and his contribution in the first Test was invaluable. There’s a lot at stake for both sides when the second Test commences and both sides need their big players to step up and perform. Not many would debate if I’d say he is their greatest ever batsman and he is the one has to carry the burden of the batting line up.

Nathan Lyon (Australia)

Nathan Lyon had a shaky start to his International career, but slowly he established himself as a spinner who can deliver on any track. Australia performed really well in India in March this year and though they lost the series, his contribution stole the headlines on quite a few occasions. He has tons of experience under his belt and though the hosts are good at playing the turning ball, Lyon will pose quite a challenge come the big day.

Playing Combinations

Bangladesh

Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar will take up the opening slots and Imrul Kayes will be coming in at number 3. There won’t be much shuffling done with the batting line up and Sabbir Rahman, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim and Nasir Hossain will be comprising the middle order.

It’ll be interesting to see if the Bangladeshi management decided to hand another chance for Mustafizur Rahman, which seems highly unlikely. Shafiul Islam is likely to be the lone fast bowler in the unit. The spin trio of Mehidy Hasan, Shakib and Taijul Islam will have to share the burden of picking up wickets and they have a decent fifth bowler in Nasir Hussain.

Australia

David Warner and Matt Renshaw will be open the batting with Usman Khawaja set to retain his number three spot. Steve Smith, Peter Handscomb and Hilton Cartwright will make up the middle-order and it’s highly likely that Mathew Wade might get dropped. Handscomb will be given the keeping duties in that scenario and the all-rounders Ashton Agar and Glenn Maxwell will be taking the number 7 and 8 slots.

Nathan Lyon and Steven O’Keefe will have to pick up the bulk of the wickets if Australia intends to square the series. Patrick Cummins might be the only fast bowler in the XI with Josh Hazlewood returning back to home with an injury. Maxwell and Agar need to contribute a lot more than they did last time and this will be one of those rare occasions when Australia will enter a match depending so heavily on their spinners.

StatAttack

6 – Nasir Hossain is 6 runs short of 1,000 Test runs

10 – Mehidy Hasan needs 10 more wickets to complete 50 Test scalps

899 – Mushfiqur Rahim has notched 899 runs at the  Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong, the most by any player