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Bangladesh face off Sri Lanka in WC amid air pollution threat

Sports Desk
05 Nov 2023 22:03:12 | Update: 05 Nov 2023 22:03:12
Bangladesh face off Sri Lanka in WC amid air pollution threat
Bangladesh head coach Chandika Hathurusingha gives instructions to top order batter Towhid Hridoy ahead of their 2023 World Cup match against Sri Lanka – Courtesy Photo

Bangladesh will expect that the things will go right for them when they will take on Sri Lanka in their eighth game of the ICC Cricket World Cup at Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi Monday. The match starts at 2:30pm.

The match, however, is under threat following the air pollution, which has reached a dangerous level of late. The Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi was 465 last day as Bangladesh desperate to get back to winning way, trained wearing mask. Anything above 400 AQI is considered extremely dangerous. It is learnt the officials will take the decision of the match after measuring the AQI on match day.

The Tigers have already been eliminated from the semifinal race after winning just one match. That too seemed a long time ago. Almost a month ago, they began the tournament with a six-wicket win over Afghanistan and things looked quite good for them as they eyed a first ever semifinal in the cricket's showpiece event.

But the performance then took a massive nosedive, as they lost six matches on the trot including a shock defeat to the Netherlands. The long streak of defeat made them jaded and out of sort and they didn't look like a team to win any match at this moment.

But still they kept the hopes, being motivated to confirm a spot in the ICC Champions Trophy, which will be held in Pakistan in 2025. As per ICC rules, the hosts Pakistan and top seven teams of the World Cup will qualify for the Champions Trophy.

Sri Lanka though won two matches, their performance was also horrible. The Lankans are not out of semifinal race mathematically but there are lot of ifs and buts involved to make sure first four spot.

They would come into the match on the back of a 302-run drubbing at the hands of India after being bowled out for only 55. The margin of the defeat is the second worst in World Cup and overall third worst in ODI history. Moreover they became a Test team to be bowled out for the lowest total in World Cup, erasing Bangladesh's name.

Sri Lanka had to suffer massively due to their key players' injury also. However injury-hit Sri Lanka's dismal situation is also a motivation for Bangladesh to snap their perpetual defeat streak.

But Bangladesh would hope that the batters and bowlers would perform up to the mark, which was not to be in the World Cup. Frequent batting order changes is believed to be the reason of batters' dismal performance but Bangladesh's bowling, specially pace bowling attack looked completely toothless.

The pace bowlers' performance before the World Cup earned a huge plaudits. In sporting pitch, however, the lack of quality is widely exposed.

And the captain himself was not at his best. He looked tired and out of idea and couldn't inspire the team either with his batting or his bowling.

Apart from Mahmudullah Riyad and to some extent Liton Das, no one could show any performance worthy as Bangladesh unarguably experienced their worst ever World Cup campaign.

Bangladesh had never won a game against Sri Lanka in World Cup. Of the four matches, they lost three while one match in last World Cup was abandoned without a bowl being bowled. Overall the two teams met 53 times, with Sri Lanka winning 42 and Bangladesh 9.

Bangladesh: Shakib Al Hasan (c), Liton Das, Tanzid Hasan Tamim, Najmul Hossain Shanto (vc), Tawhid Hridoy, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah Riyad, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Nasum Ahmed, Mahedi Hasan, Taskin Ahmed, Mustafizur Rahman, Hasan Mahmud, Shoriful Islam, Tanzim Hasan Sakib.

Sri Lanka: Kusal Mendis (c), Kusal Perera, Pathum Nissanka, Dimuth Karunaratne, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dushan Hemantha, Maheesh Theekshana, Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka, Dushmantha Chameera, Angelo Mathews, Chamika Karunaratne.