That loss and elimination caused a complete shake up of the England white-ball unit and it resulted in them becoming this attack at all cost unit which helped them win the 2019 World Cup. Skipper Eoin Morgan was captain of that side and had been dismissed for a duck. Bangladesh also embarrassed England in Chittagong in the 2011 World Cup. Morgan had scored 63 as Bangladesh squeezed home by two wickets.
While England’s white-ball unit underwent a complete change, Bangladesh’s principal characters still are the same. Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Rubel Hossain are still around.
And Bangladesh will hope that they play a major role as they face 2016 runners-up and one of the favourites for the title, England, at the Zayed Stadium in Group 1 on Wednesday in what would be the first T20 International between the two sides.
Both teams have had some tense battles across formats. Shakib al Hasan sent off Ben Stokes with a salute in Dhaka in 2016 during a stunning collapse of 10-64 in a session in the second Test. It was Shakib’s way of standing up for his good friend and teammate Tamim Iqbal, who had been tirelessly sledged by Stokes and England. Stokes had also rubbed Bangladesh the wrong way when he appealed for a handled the ball against Taijul Islam in an ODI when the batsman was only trying to give the ball back to England.
Shakib’s salute was his way of mimicking Marlon Samuels, who had sent Stokes off with a similar gesture in 2015. Stokes had replied with a cheeky comment as they headed to India from Bangladesh. “Thanks for having us Bangladesh. Been a brilliant ODI and Test series. Salute to the security, the people and of course, Shakib Al Hasan,” he posted on Facebook.
Bangladesh, who lost to Sri Lanka from a winning position in Sharjah in their first game, will have to be wary of the ultra-aggressive approach of England. But bowling coach Ottis Gibson, who worked with England during their white-ball renaissance, said in a virtual media conference that Bangladesh are not scared of anyone. “England’s mindset is always to be positive. It’s important that bowlers don’t panic when they get hit. If the conditions don’t allow a positive approach, you can give wickets away,” Gibson said.
He cited the example of England’s chase of 55, against West Indies, another team he coached and played for. “They were chasing 55 against the West Indies, and they lost four wickets. On the day we play to our potential, they will give us opportunities to win,” Gibson added.
It all depends on Bangladesh taking those opportunities though and not letting them slip like Litton Das did in Sharjah, not once, but twice. They have dropped six catches in the tournament so far. In Abu Dhabi, they would like to correct their record against Test nations in the T20 World Cup. Only one of their seven wins have come against a Test nation. That was vs West Indies in 2007.
The Abu Dhabi surface, even in afternoon games, has known to help pace bowlers. Perhaps it’s the ideal time for Mustafizur Rahman to rediscover his ‘fizz’.