Sports Monks

Pakistan vs Bangladesh 2020: Tigers to Play in Pakistan After 12 Years

The Bangladesh cricket team led by Mahmudullah will play a full-fledged series in Pakistan after 12 years with the first T20I at the Gaddafi stadium in Lahore kicking off the series on Friday. The Pakistan vs Bangladesh 2020 series will be played over two months which includes three T20Is, two Tests and a solitary ODI game. Despite security issues in Pakistan remaining a big concern for some time now for touring teams, Bangladesh skipper brushed aside the scrutiny over his side’s security in Pakistan and said that they are satisfied with the measures in place and are more focussed on their cricket. Bangladesh finally agreed to tour Pakistan, albeit, in three phases. The series will kick off with the three T20Is, with the last to be played on January 27. The two teams then play the first of the two Tests between 7 to 11 February. They play their only ODI on April 3 after a month-long gap. The final Test then will be played between 5 to 9 April which will wrap up the tour. 

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Coming into this Pakistan vs Bangladesh 2020 series, Bangladesh are missing their two most experienced players ((Shakib Al Hasan missing out due to a ban and Mushfiqur Rahim opting out of the tour), there will be added pressure on the likes of Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar and skipper Mahmudullah – the experienced names in an otherwise inexperienced batting order. Likewise with the bowling department, where Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain and Al-Amin Hossain have to shoulder the bulk of the workload. The Tigers are currently placed ninth in the ICC T20I rankings and their opponents Pakistan are placed at the top. 

Also Read: New Zealand vs India 2020, 1st T20I: T20Is Kick Off a Full-Fledged Tour

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Meanwhile, maintaining their position at the top is the biggest agenda coming into the Pakistan vs Bangladesh 2020 series for Pakistan T20I captain Babar Azam. Having registered a record 11 series victories between September 2016 and October 2018, Pakistan haven’t had the best of times in the T20 format of late, suffering four series losses on the trot (including a loss in the one-off T20I against England). This is Azam’s second stint as Pakistan T20I captain having lost his first series against Australia 2-0. Knowing that even one loss would mean that they would be dethroned from their number one position in the rankings, Pakistan have recalled the experienced duo of Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik for the series. Very strikingly, Pakistan have lost eight of their last nine T20I games since achieving the pole position in the ICC T20I rankings.

Thus an exciting series is on the cards, keeping in mind the different goals that the teams have set for themselves heading into the series. Also since Pakistan is hosting an international game after a long time, nothing much can be predicted about the numbers of runs which can be scored batting first. However, since its a T20I game, the wicket is expected to be a batting-friendly one with paying conditions with a high of 19-degree celsius, despite this being an afternoon game. 

Also Read: Prithvi Shaw: Decoding the Youngster’s Comeback in International Cricket

Squads:

Pakistan

 Babar Azam(c), Mohammad Hafeez, Ahsan Ali, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Rizwan(w), Khushdil Shah, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Hasnain, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf, Muhammad Musa, Amad Butt, Usman Qadir

Bangladesh 

 Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammad Mithun, Liton Das(w), Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mahmudullah(c), Mohammad Naim, Mahedi Hasan, Afif Hossain, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Al-Amin Hossain, Aminul Islam, Hasan Mahmud, Shafiul Islam

Here are some interesting Trivia ahead of the first T20I between both teams.

1) This will only be the second T20 to be played during the day at the Gaddafi Stadium in the last six years.

2) Only Mahmudullah and Tamim Iqbal have toured Pakistan before from Bangladesh’s current squad. 

3) Hafeez is 92 runs short of 2000 T20I runs, while Shahdab Khan is just four wickets away from 50 T20I wickets. 

4) Pakistan have won only one T20I match last year and are currently on a seven-match losing streak.

5) Pakistan lost each of their last three T20Is matches at home as Sri Lanka. Pakistan won nine out of ten T20Is they played at home before that series.

6) Pakistan have won all their 16 international games against Bangladesh. This includes only one T20I in Pakistan.

7) This is Pakistan’s 150th T20I appearance. They are the first international team to get to this feat.

8) Tamim Iqbal (1556) needs 12 runs to get past Shakib Al Hasan ( 1567) to become Bangladesh’s top-scorer in T20Is.

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