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Bangladesh: A Dark Horse to watch out for

At this year’s Cricket World Cup in UK, there’s a breath of fresh air and positivity around Banglasehi Cricket team. They have reformed themselves and are giving the impression of a strong Dark Horse by achieving a fair amount of victory.

Last updated: 19.06.2019
Bangladesh A strong Dark Horse in Cricket World Cup | Sports Social Blog

There was a time in the history of Bangladesh cricket when even a single win was hard to come by and when their team used to win once in a blue moon, for Bangladesh fans, their team’s victory on a cricket field was like a celebration of some significant festival or some event.

Following a long journey of disappointments, embarrassing as well as heart-breaking losses, plenty of moments of despairs, one could surely say that the Bangladesh team is finally realizing its potential, reaping rich dividends of their initial struggles.

At this year’s World Cup in UK, there’s a breath of fresh air and positivity when we come across the Bangladeshi team. And their numbers so far at this year’s World Cup tell you a story. Perhaps, except their comprehensive defeat in their encounter against the home team England, Bangladesh team has given us an impression of being a side that is full of confidence, self-belief and the one that is desperately hoping to create their mark at the game’s greatest spectacle.

The Bangla tigers got off to the best possible start ever at the marquee event, upsetting the Proteas by 21 runs in their high-scoring opening encounter. Against the kiwis, Bangladesh were competitive, however, eventually fell short to the 2015 World Cup finalists by 2 wickets. Following a major blip in their performance against England where they were beaten fair and square by the hosts, the Bangla tigers made a roaring comeback against West Indies to register their second win of the tournament so far and in the process, also scored the highest successful run chase of the tournament up until this point.

What makes their win against the Windies so special? Well, first and foremost, it was a team performance where almost every player rose to the occasion to bring out their best version. Their team as a whole read the conditions beautifully, bowlers did a magnificent job in restricting the Windies assault to 321 and their batters, especially Shakib Al Hasan and Liton Das made a mockery of the stiff run chase, achieving the target in more than eight overs to spare.

Well, on record, Bangladesh did beat India and South Africa at the 2007 edition of the World Cup and England in 2011 and 2015 editions as well, however, there is a significant difference in the way the team of the present is shaping up as compared to what we came across Bangladesh teams in the past.

The long-timers and now veterans Shakib Al Hasan and Mashrafe Mortaza, who is also the skipper of the side, bring to the table a good understanding and a rich experience of the game. Besides them, the core of the Bangladesh team pretty much revolves around swashbuckling Tamim Iqbal, reliable Mushfiqur Rahim, and exuberant Mustafizur Rahman. These five players are like the backbone of their side and perhaps have combined beautifully to produce the best possible results for their country in past two to three years, carrying forward Bangladesh cricket in the right direction.

Back in the early 2000s, in spite of having a rich vein of talent, Bangladesh didn’t know how to win matches and as a result, never appeared to be like a side that could challenge the better teams in the World. But, over a good part of the last four to five years, Bangladesh team has shown tremendous character, self-belief, confidence and have backed their instincts to produce the results favourable to them.

Once considered as the minnows of the game, Bangladesh side of today is a threat to any side in the world and the opposition teams can pay a heavy price if they commit the mistake of taking Bangladeshi Tigers lightly.

For Bangladesh, at this year’s World Cup so far, they are occupying the fifth position with five points from five games. With four matches yet to be played for Bangladesh, do they have an outside chance of qualifying for the semi-finals?

They play mighty Aussies next, followed by Afghanistan before they meet their neighbouring nations India and Pakistan. While one may not expect Bangladesh to upset either India or the defending champions Australia, but we can expect Bangladesh to beat Afghanistan and they can certainly fancy their chances against ever so predictable Pakistan.

It would be too early to call, but it would be fascinating to witness how the World Cup exactly would shape up if Indeed Bangladesh goes on to win the two out of their remaining four games.

This time around, Bangladesh have got the personnel who can make the things happen for them and there is a strong sense of belief revolving around their side.

Can Bangladesh stun the world to write a story of their own legacy by qualifying for the semi-finals for the first time ever at the game’s greatest spectacle? It would be intriguing to follow Bangladesh’s journey in the remainder of ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.

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