Champions Trophy SF 2: India vs Bangladesh Preview

Batsman hits ball

It's an all Subcontinent affair in the second semi-final of the Champions Trophy as India go up against Bangladesh at Edgbaston. 

The second semi-final of the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy will be an all subcontinent affair as India prepare to battle with Bangladesh.

Can Bangladesh take a step closer to their first ever major international trophy or will India live up to their billing as favourites? Let’s take a look!

India vs Bangladesh | Thursday 15 June 2017 | Edgbaston, Birmingham | 11:30

To Win Match
India 21/100 | Tie 35/1 | Bangladesh 36/10

India
You can’t speak about India at this tournament without mentioning the contribution Shikhar Dhawan has made to their charge for the title. The Delhi native has scored 271-runs in the tournament thus far at an average of 90.33. His massive 125 against Sri Lanka in the group stage was flanked by scores of 78 and 68 against South Africa and Pakistan respectively.

To be fair, India’s whole top order has been in pretty good touch this tournament. Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Yuvraj Singh have all averaged above 40 in the tournament although those stats may be slightly skewed by the fact that each man has only played three games.

What will please the Indian management more than anything is that the top four has only exposed the middle order on one occasion. That came in the loss against Sri Lanka at the Oval where Kohli and Yuvraj both failed with the bat after a fantastic platform was set by the openers.

I was most impressed with Jasprit Bumrah’s performance against South Africa. He was slated for his inability to hit the right sort of areas in the middle overs against Sri Lanka. He was bang on target against the Proteas, however, conceding just 28 runs in his eight overs while picking up the wickets of Chris Morris and Andile Phelukwayo in the process. The future does indeed look bright for the 23-year-old.

Bangladesh
Bangladesh fully deserve their place in the semi-finals after rousing displays from Shakib Al Hasan and Mahmudullah, who put on 224 for the fourth wicket in their final group stage match against New Zealand. This after the Tigers had slumped to 33-4 in their pursuit of New Zealand’s 265.

That result came after they were saved following their N/R against Australia. Had the rain come down four overs later, things could be very different for Mashrafe Mortaza and his band of merry underdogs.

They most certainly will need more from their top order if they are to get the better of a quality Indian side. Tamim Iqbal’s good enough to bounce back from his duck against the Black Caps but there will be worries over Sabbir Rahman and Soumya Sarkar who have both endured pretty average tournaments thus far.

A big shift is required from the bowling unit if they are to stand any chance here. Rohit and Dhawan have shown just how quickly they can pile the runs on at the start of the innings. If they are allowed to hang around for the first 20 overs, the Indian middle order will put them to the sword.

The pressure will be on Mustafizur and Mashrafe to grab a few early wickets before the spinners come on and try to strangle the batsmen in the middle overs. The Fiz, in particular, will need to use all of the tricks in his armoury to unsettle the Indian top order – keep an eye out for his off-cutter once the ball gets a bit older.

The Indians will do well to remember just how destructive he can be. He did, of course, grab himself a five-for on debut against India in Mirpur where he used his variations to great effect.

Verdict: India 21/100
As much as I’d love Bangladesh to do the unthinkable here and grab a place in the final, I just don’t see it happening. This Indian side are on another level and should get the job done comfortably enough. 

Value Bet: Shikhar Dhawan to top score for India at 33/10
Dhawan has been different class during this tournament and should have more than enough quality to deal with the Bangladeshi attack. He’s top scored for India in two of their three games already and the smart money will be on him doing the same on Thursday at 33/10.

Written by Jason Dewey for @Hollywoodbets.net

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