A battle between in-form bowlers and brittle top orders

Bangladesh

Bangladesh vs South Africa
June 10, New York, 10:30am local

Big picture – both teams have shaky top orders

South Africa have a great opportunity to consolidate their position at the top of Group D when they take on Bangladesh in New York in the T20 World Cup 2024. Many factors favour South Africa. They have never lost to Bangladesh in T20Is. They are familiar with the New York venue, having played both their games here.
Bangladesh did play their warm-up game against India in New York, but that was over a week ago. They can trust their bowling attack, but their top-order batting remains suspect – it was the department that failed in their win over Sri Lanka.

South Africa, too, haven’t looked a complete side despite back-to-back wins. Their problems are similar.

They bowled out Sri Lanka for 77 and restricted Netherlands to 103 for 9 but South Africa’s top order is also searching for runs. Reeza Hendricks, Quinton de Kock and Aiden Markram have a combined average of 13 (39 runs from six innings) so far. In both their wins, they got to the target fairly comfortably in the end because they were chasing small targets.
South Africa’s bowlers, though, have been in great form. Anrich Nortje and Ottneil Baartman, in particular, have been among the wickets, while Kagiso Rabada and Marco Jansen have complemented them well. Keshav Maharaj has done his bit, too, but spin hasn’t been a big threat in New York so far.
Bangladesh’s quicks also came to the party against Sri Lanka. Taskin Ahmed and Mustafizur Rahman were impressive each time they bowled in that game, while Tanzim Hasan had his moments, and legspinner Rishad Hossain‘s 3 for 22 won him the Player-of-the-Match award. He varied his pace subtly but imparted a lot of spin on the ball. Shakib Al Hasan, though, hasn’t performed particularly well with the ball since coming to the USA in mid-May.
As for their batting, Soumya Sarkar and Najmul Hossain Shanto continue to fall to soft dismissals, but Litton Das‘ 36 against Sri Lanka could give him a bit of confidence, while Tanzid Hasan must find runs on the big stage.

Bangladesh WWLLL (last five completed T20Is, most recent first)
South Africa WWLLL

In the spotlight – Towhid Hridoy and Anrich Nortje

Towhid Hridoy is quickly enhancing his reputation as a big hitter – his four sixes against Sri Lanka in Dallas proved the difference in a low-scoring game. Hridoy has now struck 42 sixes in his 15 months of international cricket, comfortably the most among Bangladesh’s batters in this period.
Anrich Nortje is working his way back into rhythm after a long injury layoff. He was off the boil in IPL 2024 and then went wicketless in two T20Is in the Caribbean. So far in the T20 World Cup, though, he has been on target, rushing batters with high pace and bounce. Nortje has good memories against Bangladesh at the T20 World Cup too, having taken 4 for 10 against them in Sydney in the 2022 edition.

Team news – teams likely to field unchanged XIs

Bangladesh are waiting on news of Shoriful Islam’s fitness. If he is fit, he comes into contention. Otherwise they are likely to stick to the XI that beat Sri Lanka.

Bangladesh (probable XI): 1 Tanzid Hasan, 2 Soumya Sarkar, 3 Litton Das (wk), 4 Najmul Hossain Shanto (capt), 5 Towhid Hridoy, 6 Shakib Al Hasan, 7 Mahmudullah, 8 Rishad Hossain, 9 Tanzim Hasan, 10 Taskin Ahmed 11 Mustafizur Rahman

South Africa are unlikely to change the combination that has worked so far in New York. They, however, have Gerald Coetzee, Bjorn Fortuin, Ryan Rickelton and Tabraiz Shamsi on the bench, and might be tempted to look in that direction, especially at Rickelton, considering the failures of the top order.

South Africa (probable XI): 1 Quinton de Kock (wk), 2 Reeza Hendricks, 3 Aiden Markram (capt), 4 Tristan Stubbs, 5 Heinrich Klaasen, 6 David Miller, 7 Marco Jansen, 8 Keshav Maharaj, 9 Kagiso Rabada, 10 Ottneil Baartman, 11 Anrich Nortje

Fast bowlers are likely to dominate in New York again and we should get low to middling totals. A sunny day has been forecast.

“You look at conditions, you look at a really strong Bangladesh team and it’s going to be a proper challenge for us. We have luckily had the privilege of playing two games now at this venue so hopefully, it can give us even clearer plans. We can develop plans from a batting point of view on how to get to a score of maybe about 140 if we do bat first and hopefully, then our bowlers can do the rest.”
South Africa captain Aiden Markram is not taking Bangladesh easily

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