Afghanistan A has provided the much-needed hope for Afghanistan Cricket after their poor show in the World Cup 2019 where they lost all nine matches. They won the 2-match unofficial Test series against Bangladesh A in Bangladesh by 1-0 margin. The Afghan A side beat the hosts by 7 wickets in the first Test played in Khulna. The visitors gained a narrow lead of four runs in the first innings.
Leg-spinner Qais Ahmad helped his team run through Bangladesh A batting with a 7-wicket haul. The youngster completed ten wickets in the game having taken three wickets in the first innings. Bangladesh A bowled out for 200 in the first essay of the second game. However, Chattogram rains did not let the match run its course. The two teams will now clash in the 5-match ODI series starting on Friday.
The 1st game of the 5-match Unofficial ODI series between Bangladesh A and Afghanistan A will be hosted by the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram.
The match starts at 9:30 AM local time (3:30 AM GMT) (9:00 AM IST).
The Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium hosted only two List A games since 2018; both being D/N ODIs. Bangladesh chased down 250+ targets in those two games with seven wickets in hand. The situation isn’t any different when it comes to day games but records do say the chasing side might not be good at chasing 260+ totals.
Average first innings score: 257 (Day List A matches since 2017)
Record of chasing teams: Won – 2, Lost – 2
Probable Playing XIs:
Imrul Kayes, Anamul Haque, Afif Hossain, Mohammad Mithun, Sabbir Rahman, Farhad Reza, Mahedi Hasan, Abu Hider Rony, Rubel Hossain, Abu Jayed Rahi, Nazmul Apu.
Bench – Fazle Rabbi, Naim Sheikh, Minhajul Abedin Afridi.
Usman Ghani, Ibrahim Zadran, Nasir Jamal, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK), Darwish Rasooli, Karim Janat, Fazal Niazi/Mirwais Ashraf, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Qais Ahmad, Naveen ul Haq, Sayed Ahmad Shirzad.
Bench – Zia ur Rahman Akbar, Munir Ahmad, Shahidullah Kamal, Fareed Malik.
(Will be added when there is an update)
Anamul Haque is giving his best to return into the Bangladesh national team. The keeper-batsman started off the Dhaka Premier League with three centuries in the starting games but didn’t keep the momentum going. However, his confidence returned after the century he scored in the unofficial Test. Anamul scored an unbeaten 121 in the first innings of the first Test but didn’t result in the team’s win.
Captain and Vice-Captain Selection:
The inform batsmen Ibrahim Zadran, Usman Ghani and Anamul Haque will be first preferred multipliers on what is expected to be a batting pitch. Qais Ahmad took 13 wickets in three innings during Test series including a 7-fer. The dual role players Afif Hossain, Farhad Reza and Sharafuddin Ashraf are too good to be made as vice-captain. Darwish Rasooli could be X-factor for the visitors if he gets more time at the crease.
Other Captain/Vice-Captain Options – Mohammad Mithun, Nasir Jamal, Sabbir Rahman, Rahmanullah Gurbaz.
Suggested Playing XI No.1 for Fantasy Cricket:
Keeper – Anamul Haque (C)
Batsmen – Usman Ghani (VC), Nasir Jamal, Sabbir Rahman, Mohammad Mithun
All-Rounders – Afif Hossain, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Farhad Reza
Bowlers – Qais Ahmad, Abu Jayed Rahi, Sayed Ahmad Shirzad
Suggested Playing XI No.2 for Fantasy Cricket:
Keeper – Anamul Haque
Batsmen – Darwish Rasooli (VC), Nasir Jamal, Imrul Kayes, Mohammad Mithun
All-Rounders – Afif Hossain (C), Karim Janat, Mahedi Hasan
Bowlers – Qais Ahmad, Mirwais Ashraf, Rubel Hossain
Imrul Kayes is probably the only star International player across both sides. However, he might not be a direct pick given his recent form. During the unofficial Test series, Kayes recorded scores 0, 34 and 2. He had a poor DPL with the bat scoring only 262 runs from 11 innings out of which 126 came in one knock.
Bangladesh A look slightly better than Afghanistan A on paper with the inclusion of the International players.
*Disclaimer: This team is based on the understanding, analysis and instinct of the author. While selecting your team, consider the points mentioned and make your own decision.
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