Following an impressive performance in the first ODI, Bangladesh took a day off on Sunday and returned to training a day later. The visiting side looked sharp in the practice session and will no doubt eye a memorable series win in Dambulla.
The pitch for the second ODI is slightly greener compared to the first game. And it seems Bangladesh will probably play the same playing XI from the first match.
“We haven’t decided about the playing XI. We will do so (select team) after looking at the wicket [Tuesday]. We broke our winning combination against India and South Africa in 2015. The wicket [Tuesday] may be different, so we have to keep that in mind. I think the wicket will be good for batting. In the sub-continent, you have to keep a lot of grass in order for the fast bowlers to be successful. Still, I feel that it is a good batting wicket,” said Tigers limited-over skipper Mashrafe bin Mortaza.
It will be a tough challenge for Bangladesh as the home side are eager to bounce back. But Mashrafe believes if Bangladesh can execute their game-plan, then they can secure the series on Tuesday.
“There’s a chance [to clinch the series on Tuesday], but for that to happen, we have to play the way we played the first match. I am fully confident that if we can play our best cricket then it will give us a good chance. They will try very hard too, since they are 1-0 behind. They will try to push us from the start. They know how to play aggressive cricket. We have to execute our plans properly, and start anew,” he said.
In contrast, the Lankans are under pressure after their below-par display on Saturday. They have now lost six ODIs in a row with the first five coming against South Africa.
In their pursuit of a comeback, they were dealt a heavy blow as in-form batsman Niroshan Dickwella was ruled out of the series after suffering a hairline fracture in his left hand. The wicketkeeper-batsman sustained the injury on Sunday during training. Dickwella did not play the first ODI due to suspension imposed by the ICC.
Lankan pace spearhead Suranga Lakmal has also been ruled out from the second ODI owing to hand injury. As the pitch is expected to favour the faster bowlers, the Lankans have added two new pacers in their squad - Nuwan Pradeep and the experienced Nuwan Kulasekara.
Toss could be an important factor again as generally, dew falls in the evening. With that said, it was actually a good toss to lose for Bangladesh in the first ODI as their batsman batted brilliantly and posted a huge total. So the decision to take first guard or field first could prove to be tricky for both the teams.
The Tigers have beaten Sri Lanka twice at their backyard, once in 2013 and the other win coming on Saturday.
The third and final ODI between the two teams will be played in Colombo on Saturday.