Bangladesh have played some brilliant cricket in this ongoing ICC World Cup 2019 despite results not coming their way in all the games. They will hope to keep their chances alive of making it to the top four when they face Afghanistan on June 24 (Monday) at the Rose Bowl in Southampton.
Bangladesh aim two points against Afghans
The Mashrafe Mortaza-led side has been terrific with their batting side with Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim leading the pack. However, it is their bowling which has led them down in the tournament. The likes of Mashrafe Mortaza and Mustafizur Rahman should raise their game and support the batsmen as they look for a win over Bangladesh.
Meanwhile, Mohammad Saifuddin has recovered from injury and is likely to slot back in the playing XI.
Here is the predicted playing XI of Bangladesh for match 31 of the ICC World Cup 2019 against Afghanistan at the Rose Bowl in Southampton:
Tamim Iqbal got a half-century against Australia which will give him some confidence going into the next games. The senior cricketer needs to shoulder the responsibility and help Bangladesh post good totals on the board.
The swashbuckling opener needs to score runs and help his side get off to a good start. So far, Soumya Sarkar has struggled to be among the runs and will hope to leave a mark in his first-ever World Cup.
Shakib Al Hasan
Shakib Al Hasan has been in the form of his life. With two centuries and a fifty, he is currently the second highest run-scorer in the World Cup. Besides, the all-rounder also has five wickets to his name. Shakib will have to at his best to outplay Australia.
Mushfiqur Rahim played a gem of an innings in the last match but failed to carry his team all the way. Bangladesh team management will want more such knocks from the senior cricketer to secure a win over bottom-placed Afghanistan.
Liton Das made a stunning World Cup debut against West Indies. He played an unbeaten 90 runs knock and shared a match-winning partnership with Shakib Al Hasan to steal a massive win. Despite failing to score against Australia, the middle-order batsman who will be high on confidence will look to keep up the excellent work against a world-class bowling attack.
Mahmudullah showed glimpses of him in the last game despite not finishing on the winning side. The onus will be on the former skipper to play more such knocks and lead the Bangladesh batting in the lower-middle order.
Sabbir Rahman has not been among the runs in the few games he has played so far. Sabbir, a talented batsman can play shots and clear the field, and the management will hope him to bring his best game forward.
Mohammad Saifuddin has been among the wickets for Bangladesh. He needs to continue the excellent work against the Afghans who put on a great fight against India. Saifuddin will be coming from an injury and will have to be careful.
Mashrafe Mortaza has been completely out of form in this World Cup. The veteran cricketer needs to up his performance and lead Bangladesh from the front against the defending champions.
Mehidy Hasan has bowled well in the powerplay overs and contained the runs. However, he needs to pick wickets and provide breakthroughs to contain the opponents for low totals.
Mustafizur Rahman has had an average time with the ball so far in the tournament. He will have to pick wickets with the new ball to give Bangladesh an early advantage over Afghanistan.