The World Cup is imminent and the warm-up matches are there to test the team strength and get the best possible combination ready. But the first warm-up match of Bangladesh against Pakistan was washed out without a ball being bowled, so Bangladesh had to make full use of this match against India. India, on the other hand, lost their first warm-up match emphatically to New Zealand.
With Tamim Iqbal rested, Mashrafe won the toss and elected to bowl first, rain came in only after a couple of balls. But it passed away soon, and Bangladesh capitalized on the moist conditions. India was reduced to 102 for 4 in 22 overs, and big guns like Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma were already back in the hut. But a blistering partnership among KL Rahul and MS Dhoni took the Bangladeshi bowling apart which shuffled continuously to test all the options. India finished at 359-7, with both KL Rahul and MS Dhoni scoring hundreds.
In reply, Bangladesh were off to a good start as both Soumya Sarkar band Liton Das looked solid. Jasprit Bumrah’s double strike sent Soumya and Shakib back to the pavilion, but Liton Das continued on his merry way along with Mushfiqur Rahim. These two put up a century stand, before Liton falling to a flighted Chahal delivery. Mohammad Mithun didn’t pick up the googly the very next ball, and he too had to follow Liton. After Mushfiqur fell for 90, there was no real contribution from anyone else, as Bangladesh stuttered to 264 and fell well short of the target.
The Bigger Picture
The results aren’t the key factors in a warm-up match., rather testing the team is the first priority in these matches. Both the teams succeeded in that arena, with both the teams getting some questions answered.
Bangladesh should be concerned about Abu Jayed Rahi being absolutely ineffective in the middle and late overs. Rubel Hossain showed signs of him being around his regular pace, and looked like he has shaked off his constantly nagging side strain. Mohammad Mithun got out in his very first delivery, and with Liton Das showing tremendous form, Bangladesh have options to shuffle the team around. The one thing Bangladesh team management should be happy about is Mustafizur Rahman bowling well using the seam at decent pace.
India had questions about their No.4 position, but the brilliant ton from KL Rahul leaves no room for questions. And with India being in a dilemma of whether to play both of their wrist spinners, both Kuldeep and Chahal put up a strong case for themselves. Bhuvneshwar Kumar looked a bit out of sorts, which might just put him out of the eleven for a bit.
Upcoming Match in the World Cup
Bangladesh will kick off their World Cup campaign against South Africa in Kennington Oval on 2nd June. India also take on the same opponent in their first match, the match is set to be on the 5th of June, at The Rose Bowl in Southampton.