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ICC World Cup 2019: Match 16, Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka, Preview – Asian strugglers battle to get back in the top half of the points table

The weather gods were not so kind when in the last game hosted in Bristol and some heavy rains are predicted for the next few days as well.

Lasith Malinga
Lasith Malinga. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

The clock is once again ticking back to some painful times for Bangladesh in the ongoing World Cup. In the last two games, they once again fell back to the “gave a good fight but lost” thing, which is something they’ve been eager to let go. Yet, some lapses in concentration against New Zealand and England saw them surrender to two defeats in three games.

Things have been worse for Sri Lanka, who despite skittling past Afghanistan, are not looking dominant enough to go big this tournament. Their batting collapsed horrendously against Afghanistan and New Zealand and their fielding too has not been very impressive. Whilst their bowlers were hammered by the Kiwi batsmen, they did a great job against Afghanistan.

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Bangladesh are actually entering this game as the firm favourites to emerge victorious and that state of mind among fans and experts reflects on their growth. The weather gods were not so kind when Bristol hosted the last game between Sri Lanka and Pakistan and some heavy rains are predicted for the next few days as well.

Playing Combinations

Bangladesh

There are some doubts over Mohammad Mithun’s place in the middle order with Sabbir Rahman knocking the door. Shakib Al Hasan is the top scorer in the tournament right now and needs to pull a few more strings with the bat. Mustafizur Rahman and Mohammad Saifuddin were a bit too expensive and that killed their whole momentum. Mashrafe Mortaza and Mehidy Hasan have been decent thus far and will be keen to continue the good work.

Predicted XI

Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mohammad Mithun/Sabbir Rahman, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Mashrafe Mortaza (C), Mustafizur Rahman.

Sri Lanka

Apart from Karunaratne and Kusal Perera, no other batsman showed any promise among the Sri Lankan batsmen. Nuwan Pradeep has a finger injury due to which he will be making way for Jeevan Mendis in the playing XI. Kusal Mendis and Dhananjaya de Silva are a couple of promising talents in the middle-order who are yet to show up. Isuru Udana and Lasith Malinga will be carrying the burden of their bowling line-up.

Predicted XI

Dimuth Karunaratne (C), Kusal Perera (wk), Lahiru Thirimanne, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Thisara Perera, Jeevan Mendis, Isuru Udana, Suranga Lakmal, Lasith Malinga.

Focus will be on

Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh)

One of the pillars of their batting unit, Tamim Iqbal is yet to fire in all cylinders in this tournament. He now has to throw the kitchen sink at it after three below-par scores already. When he begins to play some good dominant cricket, the Tigers look a much better side, capable of beating any team in the world. Mashrafe Mortaza needs that extra exuberance in the team right now which can only be provided by one of their most trusted senior men.

Lasith Malinga (Sri Lanka)

It is very saddening to see a legendary figure like Lasith Malinga, who once terrorized batting line-ups with his ominous presence, is just getting hammered to all parts. He still has a little fire left in him, but is it enough to take down some of these teams is the biggest question. He had some memorable outings against the Tigers in the past and he surely would want to replicate one of those if weather permits a game.

Head to head

Matches played – 45 | Bangladesh won – 7 | Sri Lanka – 36 | No Result – 2

Stat Attack

260 – With 260 runs to his name already, Shakib Al Hasan registered the most runs by a Bangladeshi batsman in the first three games of a World Cup.

Broadcast details

TV – Star Sports

Live Streaming – Hotstar

Match Timings – 15:00 IST; 10:30 local.

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