Bangladesh once again outlasted Australia in a low scoring encounter to win by five wickets. After two underwhelming performances with the bat, and a fourth straight T20I series loss staring them down, the Aussies are under a mountain of pressure. Can they find a way to keep the series alive? Or will Bangladesh take an unassailable 3-0 lead, in what would be their first ever series win against Australia? We’ve got you covered with the full preview and tips for the 3rd T20 in Dhaka!
Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium, Friday August 6th, 10:00pm AEST
It was an all too familiar performance for the Australians in game two. A batting collapse held together by Mitch Marsh, and a brave bowling performance in a loss. Australia have now lost seven of their last eight T20I matches, a far from ideal form line just a few months away from a World Cup.
Marsh continued his outstanding form with a gallant 45 off 42, but outside of a 30 from Moises Henriques, there was no support whatsoever. Seven of Australia’s top nine scored below 14, as Australia lost 5/18 after being 3/88. Australia’s inability to close innings’ continued, managing to score just 34 off the final six overs. Afif Hossain and Nurul Hasan showed the Aussies how to close an innings with an unbeaten 56 run partnership to seal the victory for Bangladesh.
Shakib Al Hasan once again played a crucial role with 26 and 1/22, as Bangladesh’s spinners choked the Australian batsmen for a second game in a row. Shakib, Mahedi Hasan and Nasum Ahmed combined for 2/63 off 11 overs. While seamers Mustafizur Rahman (3/23) and Shoriful Islam (2/27) gave the Australian middle order plenty troubles. Rahman now has five wickets at an average of 7.80 with an economy rate of 4.87.
Bangladesh have won four of their last five T20I matches and they seem to have the Aussies covered in all facets of the game in these conditions. Despite their batting stocks being undermanned, their batsmen have found a way to grind out scores that can win them games. Although the Australian bowlers have done an outstanding job keeping them in the first two games, they simply can’t win games scoring at barely a run a ball.
Bangladesh have been hungry this series and look desperate to create history by beating Australia in a series for the first time in their history. With Australia’s batting woes at the moment, it’s too hard to go past the hosts, who are playing some seriously spirited cricket, and could be a dark horse at this year’s T20 World Cup.
Shakib Al Hasan has lived up to his reputation as one of the premier all rounders in world cricket so far this series, with knocks of 36 and 26, as well as figures of 1/22 and 1/24. With an abundance of inexperienced players in both sides this series, Shakib has risen to the top with both bat and ball, and is playing with a huge level of confidence. Shakib’s 26 off 17 swung the game in Bangladesh’s favour early in the chase, as he took care of Mitchell Starc with ease. With a low scoring series on challenging pitches, the big time players stand up. Shakib has been a class above with both bat and ball so far this series, and he will continue that form in game three.
Despite being a much maligned figure in Australian cricket throughout his career, Mitch Marsh has carried the Australian T20 side in 2021. In this calendar year Marsh has scored 376 runs at an average of 34, with a strike rate of 131. Marsh has six scores of 45 or more this year, with scores of 51, 54, 9, 75, 30, 45 and 45 in his last seven matches. 309 runs at an average of 44 runs since the beginning of the West Indies series, highlights how consistent Marsh has been in a side that has struggled so badly with the bat. Marsh has been a revelation at number three for the Aussies, and you can trust him to put together another excellent performance for Australia.
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