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Bangladesh looks to survive, India hopes for a semi-final spot

It will be a battle of survival for one while a chance to be on the cusp of a semi-final spot for another as Bangladesh and India get ready to clash for an important super-eight fixture in Antigua. India had to travel between Islands from Barbados hours after beating Afghanistan while Bangladesh will arrive in this match with little travel fatigue.

Two games in a row now, Suryakumar Yadav has been bailing India out of trouble as the top-order, specifically the form of the opening pair of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli remains a concern. Kohli got going after three consecutive single-digit scores but failed to convert his start and gave his wicket away to Rashid Khan after scoring a run-a-ball 24. Rohit Sharma fell prey to a left-arm fast bowler once again as Fazalhaq Farooqi got his wicket. 

Apart from Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, and Hardik Pandya occasionally, no other Indian batter has been able to deliver as per the expectations. India have relied on Shivam Dube to provide the stability and firepower required in the lower-middle order, however, he also hasn’t been able to live up to the occasion so far. Rohit Sharma’s men have a stern test coming up against a quality spin attack from Bangladesh and the likes of Jasprit Bumrah and co will have the most responsibility to produce a match-winning performance. 

Bangladesh have brought a quality bowling attack in this tournament and it has delivered. Two trump cards in Mustafizur Rahman and legspinner Rishad Hossain give variety to this bowling lineup. However, the real headache for them is the underwhelming display their batters have put up in this World Cup so far and now they are up against perhaps one of the best bowling attacks in this tournament. Arshdeep Singh has been in outstanding form picking up wickets early in the innings while Bumrah has been at his absolute consistent best. 

India replaced Mohammad Siraj with Kuldeep Yadav to give the left-arm legspinner a go and he is expected to play again in this match. Rohit Sharma does not have alot of reasons to tinker with his playing XI. There have been outside noises about dropping Kohli back to number three but Rishabh Pant has been doing well at that spot, hence, no changes in the batting order are expected either.

Bangladesh do have alot to worry about the form of their openers. Tanzid Hasan hasn’t been delivering but Bangladesh’s only other batting option is Soumya Sarkar, who himself hasn’t scored loads of runs lately. Skipper Najmul Hossain Shanto will hope to contribute more with the bat along with Litton Das who also hasn’t been at his best. Veterans Shakib Al Hasan and Mahmdullah also have the baggage of hopes on their shoulders, and with this perhaps being their last World Cup, they need to give their nation something to cheer about. 

North Sound, Antigua will host this all-important South Asian battle. The weather is predicted to stay clear for the most part with slight chances of rain, something not to be worried about.