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T20 World Cup 2024, AUS vs BAN 44th Match, Super Eights, Group 1 Match Preview

Game details

Australia vs Bangladesh
Antigua, 8.30pm local time

Big Picture

Australia’s bid to unify the ICC trophies in all three formats will now face a challenge from Asia. First up will be Bangladesh, a team they have never lost to in a five-match global T20 World Cup.

Australia’s progress to the Super Eight was expected and very good – save for their low performance in their attempt to play against Scotland, a game that didn’t result for them but more for the opposition, and England.

For Bangladesh, expectations were low after their pre-tournament series loss in the USA. They had to get out of a tough group that included South Africa and Sri Lanka – a narrow win against them seemed crucial, although there were some scares against Nepal.

How far Bangladesh can progress, and whether they can topple Australia, will come as their batting order gains more productivity from struggling, admittedly, in some tough conditions. None of the batsmen has not crossed 100 runs in the tournament and only Shakib Al Hasan has crossed fifty. Towhid Hridoy has a high strike rate of 125.00.

The contrast with Australia is stark: four of the top six hit over 140 with Marcus Stoinis cruising at 190.24. Mitchell Marsh and Glenn Maxwell are still unbeaten – if they get into top gear too, it’s a formidable batting line-up.

Australia’s attacking depth is great, too. Nathan Ellis has made three group stage appearances and has been impressive in each, but he may be left behind in the big three.

Form guide

(last five games completed, most recent first)
Australia WWWWW
Bangladesh WWLWW

Highlights: Travis Head and Rishad Hossain

Since he was in the ODI World Cup, after the initial delay due to injury, Travis Head it was front and center for Australia’s success. The Super Eight stage would be an interesting view of the area of ​​his game that he has worked on: his play and spin. It’s something that brought impressive results in the IPL where he finished with a score of 164.51, but England were drawn to openers with Moeen Ali and Will Jacks which did not go well. Bangladesh have a good handful of pace bowlers, but will they be tempted into powerplay spin against Head?

Australia have enough experience against Bangladesh’s multi-hitting attack, but they haven’t faced the legspinner Rishad Hossain so he can provide a new challenge. Rishad made waves as a rare wristspinner in the Bangladesh match and has done well in the tournament with seven wickets at 14.57 and an economy of 6.80. His correct leg break to get Wanindu Hasaranga caught at slip created a lot of excitement. However, over the past year-and-a-half, Australia have fared well against the right-armer with a strike rate of 144.02, the third-highest against 150 deliveries for which data is available from the start of 2023.

Party issues: Australia’s balance question

Mitchell Marsh did not reveal his team on the eve of the match, but there is only one decision Australia have to make – whether to go with three quicklines or two front spinners. The first would seem to be the most likely option.

Australia (probable) 1 David Warner, 2 Travis Head, 3 Mitchell Marsh (capt), 4 Glenn Maxwell, 5 Marcus Stoinis, 6 Tim David, 7 Matthew Wade (wk), 8 Pat Cummins, 9 Mitchell Starc, 10 Adam Zampa, 11 Josh Hazlewood

Chandika Hathurusinghe, who knows a lot of Australian players well from his time with New South Wales, was giving little away before the game but an unchanged XI is expected. “It all depends on the situation,” he said. “Maybe it’s a little opposition as well. We’ll take that into account, their limitations. And then we play to our strengths.”

Bangladesh (probable) 1 Tanzid Hasan, 2 Litton Das (wk), 3 Najmul Hossain Shanto (capt), 4 Shakib Al Hasan, 5 Towhid Hridoy, 6 Mahmudullah, 7 Jaker Ali, 8 Tanzim Shakib, 9 Rishad Hossain, 10 Taskin Ahmed, 11 Mustafizur Rahman

Tone and context

North Sound has the second highest strike rate of the grounds used during this tournament so it was one of the better reasons for the batsmen. The breeze can play an important factor. Chance of rain but nothing too severe.

Important statistics

  • This match features the tournament’s batter and high-strike (min 30 balls faced), Marcus Stoinis, and the second most seasoned bowler (min 10 overs) in Mustafizur Rahman.
  • Shakib Al Hasan needs two wickets for 150 in T20Is
  • Quotes

    “Obviously they are playing good cricket and we know in these conditions that Bangladesh are a strong team. So, we have a lot of respect for them and hopefully we can bring our A game.”
    Mitchell Marsh

    “Recently the pitches have been very difficult for the batsmen in many places. And it is very difficult to read the pitches. We thought that in St. Vincent the pitches were good, then it became very difficult. And many bowlers- friendly, not only the pace or the spin, both, it is difficult for the batsmen.”
    Chandika Hathurusinghe

    Andrew McGlashan is deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo

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