The first Twenty20 between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka went down to the wire with Sri Lanka winning by two runs in the end. Bangladesh now head into a must-win encounter in order to square the series.
Venue: Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong
Date: Friday, February 14
Start time: 11 a.m. GMT
Live on: Star Cricket (Asia), Zee Cinema (U.K.), Willow TV (USA)
Weather: According to AccuWeather, it promises to be a sunny day with temperatures reaching 29 degrees Celsius.
There is one thing Bangladesh are surprisingly good at at present, and that's being really gritty. They also have the power of surprise, and T20 is the ideal format for them to spring a shock or two. They nearly surprised Sri Lanka in the first T20 on Wednesday when they came within two runs of chasing down 169 in a match that went down to the last ball.
That's what makes the T20 format so enticing. While there are strategies and certain targets which teams set for themselves, one individual can completely change a game and the "little guy" can quite easily beat the big dog.
Bangladesh won the toss and chose to field in the first T20, and out of their bowlers, Shakib Al Hasan and Arafat Sunny impressed. Only a blitz from Kusal Perera—with 64 off 44 balls at the top of the order—really troubled the hosts, something which Bangladesh can take confidence from heading into the second T20.
Anamul Haque was the star for Bangladesh when it came to batting with his 58 off 45 balls, and everyone else did their bit, but the target was just one stretch too far.
Even Lasith Malinga was relatively neutralised by Bangladesh, the "Slinger" ended up with figures of 4-0-34-1 with the hosts being assertive in all aspects. It might have been a loss, but Bangladesh will certainly take a lot of confidence into the second T20 and believe that they can beat Sri Lanka if they manage another solid team effort—or even if they simply set up a platform for one of their players to have a stellar day.
In the first T20, Arafat Sunny showed that he can be a tough bowler to face and he knows how to keep things tight. It was his international debut, but with over 40 domestic matches under his belt—and 42 wickets at an average of 22.28 domestically—it was an exciting debut.
He could become a key asset to the Bangladesh attack if he continues to perform like this.
Kumar Sangakkara had a blip in the first match, scoring just 11 off six balls. When Sangakkara is on form, though, he can be brutally destructive. With Bangladesh showing that they've got the spirit and gumption to chase, Sri Lanka will be eyeing a far bigger total in the second T20, and Sangakkara is key in setting that up.
Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque, Shamsur Rahman, Mithun Ali, Mominul Haque, Shakib Al Hasan, Nasir Hossain, Shabbir Rahman, Mahmudullah, Sohag Gazi, Arafat Sunny, Farhad Reza, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, Rubel Hossain and Al-Amin Hossain.
Dinesh Chandimal (capt), Lasith Malinga, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kusal Perera, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Angelo Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Suranga Lakmal, Sachithra Senanayake, Ajantha Mendis, Rangana Herath and Seekkuge Prasanna.
Squads and statistics taken from Cricinfo.
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