Injury-hit Tigers seek consolation win

Injury-affected Bangladesh national cricket team will look to avoid a clean sweep in the three-match one-day international series against South Africa when they will face the hosts in the final match at Buffalo Park in East London today.
The Tigers are still unable to open their account in the tour having suffered two crushing defeats in the previous two matches of the series that followed a 0-2 drubbing in Tests.
They will be without their star opener Tamim Iqbal, who had aggravated his muscle injury during Wednesday’s 104-run loss that also ruled him out from the two-match Twenty20 international series.
Though the series is already dead, Bangladesh should expect no mercy from South Africa who can move to the top of one-day rankings if they can win this game and India lose to New Zealand on the same day.
The hosts rested batsman Hashim Amla but replaced him with Aiden Markram, who made a successful Test debut against Bangladesh, scoring 97, 15 and 143 in his three innings.
He followed up with 82 in a one-day warm-up match for a South African Invitation team at Bloemfontein.
With 214 runs already in his bag, other South African opener Quinton de Kock stands with a chance to create a new record against Bangladesh in a three-match bilateral series.
If de Kock can score at least 80 runs he will overtake Australia’s Shane Watson who scored highest 294 runs against Bangladesh in a three-match series in 2011.
It is, however, more important for Bangladesh to win the game than stopping de Kock from creating record as they have so far gained nothing from the series.
There was hardly any competition in the previous matches which came as more shock for Bangladesh fans after years of success at home.
Though Bangladesh’s batting somewhat clicked in the one-day series, bowlers continued their struggle despite Rubel Hossain picking four wickets in the previous match.
Even the inspirational captain Mashrafee bin Murtaza could not lift their morale as he returned with his worst ever figure of 0-82 in the last match.
With Mustafizur Rahman out injured and Mashrafee not at his very best Bangladesh’s best hopes now lies on Sakib al Hasan, who showed a sign of returning to form with 2-60 at Paarl.
Sakib also could take this as his preparation for Twenty20 series, where he will lead the side in absence of Mahsrafee, who chose to retire from this format.

Source: New Age

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