Tigers seek top-order stability in must-win game against PNG
Bangladesh will be looking to make a statement on Thursday in their last qualifying game against Papua New Guinea (PNG), in which a convincing win will surely be on the cards for Mahmudullah Riyad and his troops at the Al Amerat Cricket Stadium in Muscat.
The Tigers opted to rest on Wednesday ahead of tomorrow's clash against PNG, which will begin at 4:00pm (BST).
The Tigers kept their hopes alive for the Super 12 stage after a 26-run win over co-hosts Oman on Tuesday which was a must-win encounter following their shock six-run defeat to Scotland in their tournament opener.
For Bangladesh, although there is no alternative other than a win against PNG, the Tigers will not have to win by a big margin as even a three-run win against the T20 World Cup debutants will see Mahmudullah's men through to the Super 12s regardless of the result between Scotland and Oman in the last group game.
Keeping the net run rate in mind, if Bangladesh win by a big margin against PNG and Oman beat Scotland by a close margin, there is a chance for the Tigers to advance to the Super 12 stage as the Group B champion.
However, keeping aside all the equations, Bangladesh's first target will be to get at least a win tomorrow.
Bangladesh's opening stand has been the major area of concern as the Tigers managed to score 25 for two and 29 for two in powerplays in their first two games against Scotland and Oman respectively.
Although Mohammad Naim, who returned to the squad in place of Soumya Sarkar, top-scored with a 64-run knock against Oman, his partner Liton Das is still to make a mark in the tournament, scoring only five and six in the first two games.
Shakib Al Hasan remained the most impressive for the Tigers in their win against Oman with both bat and ball. And the champion all-rounder will once again play a big role for Bangladesh against PNG.
The team management made drastic changes in the batting order against Oman as the Tigers promoted Mahedi Hasan and Nurul Hasan Sohan up the order while having Mushfiqur Rahim play at number eight for the first time in five years.
Head coach Russell Domingo, however, will probably be eying for a more stable batting formation against PNG, keeping in mind the upcoming Super 12 stage.
Meanwhile, PNG all-rounder Charles Amini informed that they are looking to create history by beating Bangladesh and are aiming to end the tournament on a positive note.