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ICC Champions Trophy: 5 reasons why India should not take Bangladesh lightly

From a young and exciting Mustafizur Rahim to a new-found consistency in limited-overs cricket, Bangladesh cricket team are no push-overs and Virat Kohli-led Indian cricket team can’t afford to take them lightly in their final ICC Champions Trophy warm-up game at the Oval on Tuesday

icc champions trophy 2017 Updated: May 30, 2017 13:40 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Champions Trophy 2017,ICC Champions Trophy,India vs Bangladesh
Bangladesh cricket team captain Mashrafe bin Mortaza (2L), who has been inspirational, leading the team from the front, and Shakib al Hasan (3L), the world’s leading all-rounder and a match winner, will look to have a good ICC Champions Trophy warm-up match against Virat Kohli-led Indian cricket team at the Oval on Tuesday.(Getty Images)

As Indian cricket team take on Bangladesh cricket team in their ICC Champions Trophy 2017 second warm-up match at the Oval on Tuesday, HT looks at the factors Virat Kohli & Co need to be wary of.

Recent trend

Bangladesh cannot be ranked amongst the minnows anymore. The fact that they could make the cut for the eight-team ICC Champions Trophy 2017 shows that they are playing smart cricket too. In fact, they are now ranked higher (No 6) in the ODI rankings than the West Indies, Sri Lanka and Pakistan — all World Cup winners in the past.

Since the 2015 ICC World Cup, Indian cricket team and Bangladesh cricket team have met each other four times and they have shared the laurels, winning two matches apiece. The last ODI series between the Asian neighbours resulted in India losing 1-2.

Rahim, the real threat

Mustafizur Rahim is undoubtedly the bowling superstar of the Bangladesh team. With his set of skills, the youngster could be the one bowler India needs to guard against, especially in English conditions. However, the Indian batsmen have faced enough of Rahim in the recently-concluded IPL to know how to tackle him.

Rahman ready to explode

There is a lot riding on Sabbir Rahman. He is one of the key batters that skipper Mashrafe Mortaza would rely heavily on when it comes to the bating unit.

He is known to relish big moments and the ICC Champions Trophy could be the stage he would be waiting to explode. Team India can negate his threat if they dismiss him early on.

Inspiring Mortaza

He is certainly proving to be an inspirational skipper for Bangladesh. Under his captaincy, the team has responded to challenges like never before. Mashrafe bin Mortaza’s captaincy is one of the reasons for Bangladesh’s sharp rise in the ODI rankings. From November 2014, Bangladesh have played nine ODI series, winning six, losing two (against England and New Zealand) and drawing one (against Sri Lanka).

Sizzling Shakib

Shakib al Hasan is a going to be the most important cog in the Bangladesh unit after skipper Mortaza. The top ranked all-rounder in Test, ODI and T20I, Shakib is certainly a big match-winner that Bangladesh would rely on. His wealth of experience — 270 international games — would be invaluable during the tournament.

First Published: May 30, 2017 12:14 IST