Despite being in a perpetual defeat circle, Bangladesh want to make their first T20 International appearance in the land down under a memorable one when they take on the Netherlands for their opening game of the T20 World Cup at Bellerive Oval here.
The match starts at 10am as per Bangladesh Time and will be aired live on Gazi TV and T Sports Channel, reports BSS.
A victory is also imperative for them to snap the jinx of defeat in the main round of the tournament for which an opponent like the Netherlands give them a genuine hope.
Since their only victory against West Indies in the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in 2007, Bangladesh have never won any game in the tournament proper. In the last World Cup in 2021 also, they lost all of the five matches after overcoming the first round of game somehow.
This time, they didn't have to play in the first round as their rankings in the cut-off date took them to the Super 12s of the World Cup straightway but their performance since the 2021 T20 World Cup remains utmost disappointing. In this period, they played 27 matches and lost 20, a number that left the fans fuming.
Bangladesh also lost most of the senior players from the T20 International cricket in this period-while Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur retired from this format after the question raised against their performance, Mahmudullah Riyad was dropped, leaving Shakib Al Hasan to remain as only senior player. He also is leading a side whose most of the players continue to misfire.
Bangladesh indeed came in this World Cup with the back of four straight defeats, all of which came in the tri-nation series in New Zealand. They also lost their warm-up game to Afghanistan by 62 runs before the second and last practice game against South Africa was washed out.
Netherlands got a touch of luck to move to the Super 12s. Namibia was strong contender to move to the next round when they upset Sri Lanka in their first game. But while Sri Lanka then won the two matches with ease, Netherlands were still unsure about their chance despite beating Namibia because of their run rate. If Namibia could beat United Arab Emirates (UAE), they would have been through but simply they couldn't do that.
Even though the fans believed, Netherlands are the easier opponent for Bangladesh, the Tigers' dismal performance of late couldn't speak a volume of their success.
However Bangladesh captain Shakib refused to take Netherlands lightly, saying that they took same preparation for all of the five teams they would face in the Super 12s.
"They (Dutch) have qualified, and so they have the ability to do well. You (media) may have created the impression that Bangladesh is relieved to have the Netherlands coming. We never think like that. No group in the world thinks like this who is really good, who is really bad. All teams try to do what they can for the good of the team," Shakib said here today.
"There are five matches in the World Cup. We have come here with the preparation of these five matches. The preparation will be the same whoever we play here, it should be."
Bangladesh so far played three matches against Netherlands-winning two and losing one. Overall Bangladesh played 138 T20 Internationals and while they won 47 matches, they had lost 89 matches. Three other matches ended in no result.
Bangladesh: Shakib Al Hasan (capt), Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Afif Hossain, Mossadek Hossain, Liton Das, Yasir Ali, Nurul Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Ebadot Hossain, Shoriful Islam, Hasan Mahmud, Najmul Hossain, Nasum Ahmed and Soumya Sarkar.
Netherlands: Scott Edwards (c, wk), Colin Ackermann, Shariz Ahmad, Logan van Beek, Tom Cooper, Brandon Glover, Timm van der Gugten, Fred Klaassen, Bas de Leede, Paul van Meekeren, Roelof van der Merwe, Stephan Myburgh, Teja Nidamanuru, Max O'Dowd, Tim Pringle and Vikram Singh.