Bangladesh captain Tamim Iqbal warned his side not to take Afghanistan lightly as he believes the visitors will pose a different challenge in the three-match ODI series.
According to Tamim, the ODI series will not be the calk-walk like the Test match which they won a record 546-run margin.
“I am expecting a tough challenge from Afghanistan in ODI series. It won’t be a calk-walk like the Test match. They are one of the best bowling units in white-ball format so we have to give our best to win the game," Tamim said in Chattogram on Tuesday.
“They have Rashid Khan and other cricketers back in the side and those players can single-handedly win the match. We have to keep up our consistency.”
All of the three matches of the series will be taken place at Zahur Ahmed Chowdury Stadium in Chattogram, with the first one beginning today (Wednesday), reports BSS.
Tamim hinted that they will prepare a pitch suited for their fast bowlers, who have been on top of their game for the last two years. The captain also made it clear a different pace bowling combination will be seen in all three matches as they want to rotate the players.
“We might go different pace bowling combination in the three matches. It is true that if there was a pace bowling all-rounder it would have been good but no one is performing in the domestic cricket. There was Saifuddin but he is not fit at the moment," he said.
“Our pace bowling department has been amazing in the last two years and won us many matches. We have full faith on them.”
The two teams met last year in Bangladesh with the hosts taking the series by 2-1, despite facing a stern challenge from the Afghans. Bangladesh in fact have been such a dominating force in ODI format at own backyard that they only lost two series at home since 2015 and all of those two defeats came against World Champions England who beat them in 2016 and this year.
Tamim expressed his desire to give Naim Sheikh and Afif Hossain, the two who returned to the side, some game time ahead of the big tournament like World Cup.
“Though it is not guaranteed, we would try to give everyone chance to play some matches. I would like to see Naim, Afif in the first XI. It is tough because you can’t drop someone who is playing so well. But again it is important to give them some game time ahead of the big tournament like World Cup. You can’t go to a tournament like World Cup without playing any International game. So it is important. We’ll see how we can fit them into the mix,” he said.
“Whether we go with one extra batsman or bowler like we did in the previous series largely depends on seeing the opposition and we would like to do that," he added.