Australia opt to bowl in first T20I against Tigers
Australia won the toss and elected to bowl against Bangladesh in the first of the five-match T20I series at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur today. This is the first-ever bilateral T20I series between the two sides.
Left-arm pacer Mustafizur Rahman, who missed the final T20I against Zimbabwe due to an ankle niggle, replaces Taskin Ahmed for today's game while Mohammad Saifuddin makes way for all-rounder Mahedi Hasan, an off-spinner who possesses the ability to score quick runs at the death. Mustafizur and Shoriful Islam are the only two frontline pacers in the Tigers' line-up.
Meanwhile, Australia have fielded three pacers -- Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Andrew Tye -- alongside three spinners in Adam Zampa, Ashton Agar and all-rounder Ashton Turner, who bowls off-spin.
Bangladesh faced Australia four times in T20s so far, which were all at the T20 World Cups, and the Tigers are yet to secure their first T20 victory against the Aussies.
Australia, to be led by Matthew Wade in absence of regular limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch, will be in search of their first T20 series win since resumption following the pandemic-induced break. The Aussies have lost all four of their previous T20 series -- a 3-2 defeat away to New Zealand, 2-1 defeat at home to India, 2-1 defeat away to England and their latest 4-1 loss away to the West Indies.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh are coming into this series on the back of a 2-1 win away to Zimbabwe and will be hoping to register their first-ever T20 victory against Australia.
However, the Tigers will have their work cut out as they will be missing key players like Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Mushfiqur Rahim and young leg-spinner Aminul Islam -- all of whom were part of the Tigers' recent Zimbabwe T20I series but had to leave the bio-secure bubble due to injuries and personal tragedies.
Bangladesh: Mahmudullah Riyad, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammad Naim, Shakib Al Hasan, Nurul Hasan Sohan, Afif Hossain, Shamim Hossain, Mahedi Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman, Shoriful Islam, Nasum Ahmed
Australia: Alex Carey, Josh Philippe, Mitchell Marsh, Moises Henriques, Matthew Wade, Ashton Turner, Ashton Agar, Mitchell Starc, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood