The quarter final leg of the World Cup is about to commence. While South Africa takes on Sri Lanka in the first outing, a relatively easier match follows that game. The second quarter final will be played between India and Bangladesh. India has been on a roll and has cruised through Group B with scintillating ease. Bangladesh on the other hand, has been focused. Their game against the Kangaroos was washed out. But they went on to defeat England, and gave New Zealand a run for their money. However, India cannot take anything for granted.
Below is the summary of 5 Things India must do against Bangladesh –
1. Ensure that Rohit is back in form:
An average of 31.80 in this tournament surely does not justify the threat that Sharma possesses. Sharma has two fifties in the competition so far, but against the minnows – Ireland and UAE. Going into the World Cup, a lot was expected from Sharma, after his fantastic 138 against Australia in the tri-series.
But Shikhar Dhawan’s performances have hidden the woes of Sharma. Against Bangladesh though, Rohit has a golden opportunity lying ahead of him. A steady, chanceless knock against the Asian neighbors will surely get Rohit going. And it is often said that when Rohit gets going, the fielders are mere spectators!
2. Get Jadeja back in the rhythm –
Ravindra Jadeja’s performances as of now have been completely underwhelming to say the least. With the bat, Jadeja has looked simply miserable. With the ball though, there is always the scope for improvement. Jadeja averages 37 with the ball in the World Cup so far, as opposed to his career average of 33. His economy rate has been on the higher side as well.
A poor show against Bangladesh, will dent his confidence further. To avoid this, skipper MS Dhoni will have to ensure that Jadeja is given an aggressive field setup while bowling. If the Indian team is cruising through the target, then promoting Jadeja up the order wouldn’t be a bad idea as well.
3. Bowlers must continue with the good show:
The Indian bowlers so far have been a revelation. The bowlers have broken the spines of the opposing batting lineups with sheer ease. Against Bangladesh though, it will be imperative that the bowlers continue with the good show. A pitiable performance against Bangladesh could dent the motivation of the bowlers.
The seamers will have to ensure that Tamim Iqbal doesn’t get off to a flier. They will have to be disciplined, and bowl with the same guile, as they have been bowling in the tournament. It will be the duty of the spinners to make sure that Shakib and Mushfiqur Rahim don’t swing the pendulum towards Bangladesh in the middle overs. Another fantastic performance from the bowlers will only lead to a rise in the positivity.
4. Let the “killer instinct” be there:
The lack of the phrase “killer instinct” in their performances has often hurt Team India. But in this World Cup so far, the Indians have been like lions, which have sensed, and ravaged their prey. A classic instance was against South Africa. After dismissing Hashim Amla the Indians did not get off guard and continued to be aggressive. That was evident against AB de Villiers. Jadeja was given the cushion of a tight field setting for De Villiers. After four dots, de Villiers felt the pressure, and chose to go back for the second run.
In the meantime, an accurate throw from Mohit Sharma, all, but ended AB’s knock. Against Bangladesh, the Indians must ensure that they don’t get carried away in any part of the game. After all, cricket is a game of glorious uncertainties!
5. Not take Bangladesh lightly:
The Bangladeshi side has some match winners in its arsenal. Shakib Al Hasan is one such name. Hasan has redefined the term “all-rounder”. Shakib is dangerous with the willow, as well as with the ball. Tamim Iqbal’s presence at the top of the order is always a sign of danger for the Indians.
Mahmudullah is in his purple patch and has already notched up a couple of tons. Mushfiqur is a pocket-sized dynamite with the bat, and can explode against any bowling attack. Taskin Ahmad, the teenaged pace sensation will be more than handy on the bouncy MCG strip. If India treats this Bangladesh side like an ordinary side, then they are inviting trouble for themselves.
It will be significant for the Indians to ensure that these five boxes are ticked by the end of the second quarter final. It will be dazzling to watch the Asian teams fight it out at the MCG.