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ICC Cricket World Cup: South Africa v Bangladesh Preview

South Africa v Bangladesh Preview

A poor batting effort from the Proteas undermined a solid display from their bowlers in a big opening day loss to England.

The first three matches of the Proteas’ World Cup campaign will be opening matches for their opponents and Bangladesh begin their challenge on Sunday at The Oval.

Recent meetings between the sides suggest that South Africa should hold a significant edge over Bangladesh, but the Tigers come into the World Cup in good form. They saw off the West Indies and Ireland in a tri-series, in which Mashrafe Mortaza’s side went unbeaten.

Sunday 2 June
The Oval, London
11:30


To Win Match
South Africa
Tie
Bangladesh


South Africa
The decision to play Aiden Markram ahead of David Miller, in hindsight, may have cost the Proteas a shot at upsetting England in the World Cup opener.

Markram failed to make an impression coming in at number three, while Rassie van der Dussen struggled to settle into the innings from five. The Proteas missed the finishing powers of Miller, while senior plays failed to stand up in what was a manageable chase.

Miller and Chris Morris are likely to get a run in the second game of the Proteas’ World Cup. Dwaine Pretorius’ bowling was exposed in exactly the manner almost everyone thought it would be – and Dale Steyn will not be risked. Morris should possess enough venom and experience to contribute with the ball against Bangladesh.

The Proteas’ lack of a fifth specialist bowler is a concern and they will be coming up against a Bangladesh top-order in decent touch. If Morris can give the Proteas a full 10 overs at a decent economy rate, he will leap ahead of Pretorius as the second seaming all-rounder.

If South Africa want to make it into the top four, they need to pick up two points from their clash with Bangladesh.

Bangladesh
Coming into the tournament ranked seventh in ODI cricket, Bangladesh are no longer a bottom of the barrel side.

At their core are experienced cricketers who are capable of winning matches on their own, led by the number one-ranked ODI all-rounder in Shakib Al Hasan.

Tamim Iqbal has enjoyed increased support from the top-order in recent times, with Liton Das and Soumya Sarkar playing well in Ireland.

Bangladesh were swept aside by India during their warm-up match, where Mahendra Singh Dhoni was so dominant he even took to setting the Tigers’ field at one point. It is dangerous to read too much into warm-up matches, but it did suggest that Bangladesh aren’t quite ready to challenge for a top-four spot.

The Tigers could make a big statement if they are able to knock over a Proteas team reeling from a big loss to England at the same venue.

Bangladesh sport an XI full of players who one might consider dangerous rather than consistent, but that makes them a side that the Proteas cannot afford to underestimate.

Verdict
The Proteas will win, but Bangladesh will give them a good game.

Written by @JonhenryWilson

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