Bangladesh hope to continue winning momentum against Ireland

Shakib Al Hasan during a national team training session in Sylhet on 18 March 2023Shamsul Hoque

Bangladesh will hope to maintain the winning momentum from the England series when they take on visiting Ireland in the three-match One-Day International (ODI) series which begins Saturday at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium, reports news agency BSS.

The match will start at 2:00pm and will be aired live on T Sports.

“We respect Ireland just like England but we don’t fear any team. We are not going to treat Ireland any less than how we prepared for England. When we play our best cricket, we are good enough to beat most teams. It is our mantra,” Bangladesh head coach Chandika Hathurusingha said, summing up their approach toward the series.

Bangladesh ODI captain Tamim Iqbal and Ireland ODI captain Andrew Balbirnie

Bangladesh are high on confidence following their landmark T20 clean sweep over T20 World Champions England.

Bangladesh are the clear favourites in the series, having won seven of the 10 ODIs between the two sides. The Tigers have suffered two defeats against the Irish, but they have also never lost an ODI against Ireland at home.

Tamim Iqbal, Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim during Bangladesh's training session in Sylhet on Friday
Prothom Alo

Ireland won the maiden encounter between the two sides in the 2007 ICC World Cup in Bridgetown, West Indies and the last time they beat Bangladesh in an ODI was in 2010 at Belfast.

This will be the first ODI between the two teams since 2019, when Bangladesh notched up a comfortable six-wicket win over the hosts in Dublin in a tri-nation series. Bangladesh ended up winning that series, defeating West Indies in the final.

Bangladesh’s over six-year-long unbeaten streak in home ODI series ended when they suffered a 1-2 series defeat against England in earlier this month.

Still, Bangladesh’s record in home ODI series is to marvel at as they have just lost two bilateral ODI series since 2015, both against England.

But Hathurusingha doesn’t want his charges to become complacent.

“Winning is always our aim whoever we play. No team is easy in international cricket. They beat England during the World Cup. On their day, any team can beat anyone,” The Sri Lankan said.

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The head coach also hinted at some changes in the best XI in the first ODI as the team wants to expand its player’s pool ahead of the upcoming ODI World Cup in India.

“We are trying to expand our pool regardless of who we play. (But) we will try to win,” he said.

Bangladesh: Tamim Iqbal (c), Liton Das, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Afif Hossain, Yasir Ali, Towhid Hridoy, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Nasum Ahmed, Taskin Ahmed, Ebadot Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Hasan Mahmud, Shoriful Islam, Zakir Hasan

Ireland: Andrew Balbirnie (c), Harry Tector, Gareth Delany, Paul Stirling, Curtis Campher, Matthew Humphreys, Lorcan Tucker, Stephen Doheny, Mark Adair, George Dockrell, Graham Hume, Benjamin White, Andy McBrine, Joshua Little