U-19s face high-flying Namibia today
Bangladesh's Young Tigers will take on a spirited Namibia at the Sheikh Kamal International Stadium in Cox's Bazar today in the last Group A fixture of the ICC Under-19 World Cup.
While both teams have already made it through to the quarterfinals, the winner will finish the group on top. The winner of Group A will face Nepal in the quarterfinals, while the team that loses the match at Cox's Bazar today will face India.
While Namibia did beat defending champions South Africa in their last game and are on a high having qualified for their first quarterfinal in the tournament's history, going by the huge amount of experience that this young Bangladeshi side have, the hosts will be expected to ease past the cricketers from Africa.
Bangladesh might have aced much more difficult tasks in the past, but the youngsters know that there is no room for complacency. Their struggle in the opening overs against Scotland in their last game suggests that the hosts are yet to hit their best form with the bat.
“We are not thinking too much about the fact that we are playing Namibia. We are going to plan for this match as seriously as we plan for any other game,” 18-year-old left-arm spinner Saleh Ahmed Shawon told reporters yesterday.
“In fact, we are not looking at any of these games as World Cup encounters. We are trying to look at all the games as a normal bilateral series. We are taking them one by one and our target is to win six of them,” he added.
The junior Tigers had made a slow start in the last game and only recovered once Nazmul Hossain got set and went on to score a century. He will once again be the key for the hosts.
England, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India and Nepal are the other teams to have sealed quarterfinal berths. The winner between West Indies and Zimbabwe in Chittagong today will get the last spot of the knock-out stage.