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Tigers take on Sri Lanka in ‘do or die’ Asia Cup match Thursday

With an aim to confirm the Super Four berth of Asia Cup, Bangladesh will take on Sri Lanka on Thursday at Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

For both of the teams, the game is ‘do or die’ to stay alive in the tournament following their respective defeats to Afghanistan, reports BSS.

The indomitable Afghans crushed Bangladesh by seven wickets and whacked Sri Lanka past by eight wickets and became the first team to move to the Super Four.

A straight victory therefore is needed to reach the next round where each four teams will face off each other before the top two teams on the basis of points move to the final. Those who will concede defeat will be eliminated from the tournament straightway.

The all important game starts on 8 PM and will be aired live on Bangladesh Television (BTV), GTV and Nagorik TV.

After being tormented by the Afghans, Sri Lanka captain Dasun Shanaka expressed his hopes to move to the Super Four, citing Bangladesh as much easier opponent than Afghanistan. The statement made by him is absolutely true given the performance of the both teams but it is an insult to Tigers self-respect which should motivate them to give a fitting reply. None other than a victory will be a befitting reply.

But can Bangladesh turn the things around after a disappointing loss to the Afghanistan in opening game, where there lack of power-hitting problem came to the fore again.

A Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) official said the board president Nazmul Hasan Papon met the cricketers at hotel on Wednesday and tried to bolster their confidence ahead of big clash against Sri Lanka.

While the Sharjah pitch was slow, the Dubai where Bangladesh will play against the Lankans is believed to produce batting friendly wicket. If so, the problem will be compounded for Bangladesh as they still are not good enough to play in true batting pitch.

Bangladesh so far played 12 matches against Sri Lanka and won just four, in contrast of losing eight. But what could motivate Bangladesh is that their highest chase and highest score in T20 cricket came against the Sri Lanka and that too in Lankan soil. In that match, Mushfiqur Rahim played 35 ball-72 not out to help Bangladesh overcome Lankan’s 214-6 with two balls to spare as Bangladesh totaled 215-5. Mushfiqur’s knock still is touted as one of the best knocks in T20 International cricket.

As Mushfiqur is under fire following his prolonged bad patch in T20 cricket, his service is again needed if Bangladesh wants to move to the Super Four.

Overall Bangladesh played 132 matches, winning 45 and losing 84 while three matches ended in no result.

Squad:

Bangladesh: Shakib Al Hasan (captain), Anamul Haque Bijoy, Mushfiqur Rahim, Afif Hossain (vice-captain), Mosaddek Hossain, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mahedi
Hasan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Naim Sheikh, Mustafizur Rahman, Nasum Ahmed, Sabbir Rahman, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Ebadot Hossain, Parvez Hossain Emon, Taskin Ahmed

Sri Lanka: Dasun Shanaka (captain, Danushka Gunathilaka, Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis, Charith Asalanka, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Ashen Bandara, Dhananjaya de Silva, Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana, Jeffrey Vandersay, Praveen Jayawickrama, Chamika Karunaratne, Dilshan Madushanka, Matheesha Pathirana, Nuwanidu Fernando, Dinesh Chandimal