Sunday, June 25, 2017 | ePaper

Mashrafe optimistic to win against India

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India have more pressure than us : Mashrafe

UNB, Dhaka :
Bangladesh will play defending champions India in the 2nd semifinal of the eight-nation ICC Champions Trophy at Edgbaston in Birmingham today       (Thursday) with Bangladesh captain Mashrafe optimistic to win the match.
The match between the two sub-continent rivals will begin at 3:30pm Bangladesh time.
Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza tweeted on his page saying that "We like to play the Champions Trophy semifinal (against India) without any pressure, no one should tag us as champions just yet, our boys want to play without any pressure."
"Inshallah (by the grace of almighty) we will win, you will see us with bat and ball on the ground for the rest things."
The captain also expressed his gratitude to the Tigers fans saying, "We all know that without all of your support, we can't achieve our goal."
Bangladesh cricket team head coach Chandika Hathurusingha believes that his side has the skills and confidence to pull off a shock.
"Our message to our players is that, it's not a very big game, but it's a very big opportunity (for us). If you think of it in this way, any cricketer thrives on these opportunities. My message to the boys is to take this opportunity in both hands," the coach said.
"We are not thinking of the opposition or occasion too much. All we are thinking is of the opportunity to show the world what we can do and how far we have come. We just want to do our best and enjoy the game. If we play to our potential, we can compete with any team. We have to play well in all departments to beat a big team like India.
The Tigers qualified for the prestigious semifinal of any ICC event for the first time as Group A runners-up at the coffin of two times Champions Trophy winner and current World champions Australia, who made an early exist from the global meet after conceding a 40-run defeat to group champions England under DLS method on Saturday.
The previous best achievement of the Tigers in any ICC event was reaching the quarterfinal of the ICC World Cup 2015 after reaching the super eight stage of 2007 ICC World Cup in the West Indies eliminating giant India.
On the way to their semifinal berth, Bangladesh collected three points from three matches while holders India booked a seat for last four stage as Group B champions securing four points from three games with two wins and one loss against Sri Lanka.
Bangladesh eliminated New Zealand from the global event beating them by 5 wickets in their last group match where man of the match Shakib Al Hasan and Mahmudullah Riyad shared the Tigers' ODI record partnership of 224 runs in 34.5 overs, the Bangladesh highest partnership in any stand against any team in ODI.
Shakib and Mahmudullah made the historic partnership in the 5th wicket stand, the highest partnership in the 8th edition of the tournament and the 2nd highest in all editions of the Champions Trophy.
The highest partnership was 252 runs in 40.2 overs made by Ricky Ponting and Shane Watson in the unbeaten 2nd wicket stand for Australia against England in 2009.
In the last game against New Zealand, Shakib hammered 114 runs to make his 7th ODI ton while Mahmudullah, who scored back to back century in the last World Cup against England and New Zealand, hammered unbeaten 102 runs to make his 3rd ODI century, all in the ICC global events.
Tigers' previous highest ODI partnership was of a 178-run one in 21.4 in the 3rd stand between Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim against Pakistan in Dhaka in April 2015. Tamim and Mushfiqur hammered century each in the match scoring 132 and 106 runs respectively.
Bangladesh started their group campaign suffering an eight-wicket defeat against England in the tournament opener and shared match points with Australia in the rain-hit 2nd game.
Two times champions India started their campaign with a 124-run win against their arch-rival Pakistan under the DLS method while lost to Sri Lanka by 7 wickets in the 2nd game and confirmed the semifinal berth eliminating top seed South Africa by 8 wickets in their last group encounter.
Bangladesh secured five wins to 26 defeats against India in their previous 32 ODI meetings where remaining one match ended in no result.
Bangladesh squad: Mashrafe Bin Mortaza (captain), Imrul Kayes, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mehedi Hasan Miraz, Mosaddek Hossain, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain, Sabbir Rahman, Shafiul Islam, Shakib Al Hasan, Soumya Sarkar, Sunzamul Islam, Tamim Iqbal and Taskin Ahmed.
India squad: Virat Kohli (captain), Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Shikhar Dhawan, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Ravindra Jadeja, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, Ajinkya Rahane, Mohammed Shami, Rohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh and Umesh Yadav.

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