Perhaps the biggest area of concern for the Tigers throughout the 2017 Champions Trophy was the top-order's failure. Apart from Tamim Iqbal, none of the top-order batsmen in the form of Soumya Sarkar, Sabbir Rahman and even Imrul Kayes, who played the first two games, were able to provide a good start. With the exception of the tournament opener against England, the Tigers openers were unable to add a 50-run stand. And on Thursday, Bangladesh lost their first wicket in the very first over and it proved to be costly. Bangladesh were struggling on 31 for the loss of two wickets inside seven overs, which immediately put the side on the back foot in the all-important semi-final. The Tigers found it difficult to come back from there.
Once again it was the in-form Tamim who held the ship for the Tigers. He looked composed right from the start, despite losing partners at the other end. The left-hander remained calm and played according to the merit of the ball as he, alongside Mushfiqur Rahim, started to rebuild the initial damage. At that point, the Tigers were heading towards a big total. But Tamim was a tad frustrated after he missed out on a loose Kedar Jadhav delivery in the fifth ball of the 28th over. He seemed frustrated as he went for a big shot in the very next ball only to get cleaned up for 70.
The wicketkeeper-batsman will definitely curse himself at the way he got out, despite earlier playing wonderfully for his 61. After the departure of Tamim, the centurion of the previous game Shakib al Hasan also fell cheaply. Mushfiq took all the responsibility upon himself and had to carry his innings at least till the 45th over if the Tigers were to post a handsome total. But the right-hander, whose eyes lit up when he saw a full toss delivery from Jadhav only managed to find Indian skipper Virat Kohli at short mid-wicket. This was probably the biggest setback of Bangladesh's innings as they were never able to recover after that.
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Mushfiqur Rahim trudges back to the dressing room following his dismissal DHAKA TRIBUNE
Lack of partnerships:
With the exception of the 123-run partnership between Tamim and Mushfiq for the third wicket, there were no significant partnerships from Bangladesh. Following Tamim's dismissal, the Tigers kept losing wickets at regular intervals. The Mahmudullah-Mosaddek Hossain stand and Mashrafe bin Mortaza-Taskin Ahmed pair added 39 and 35 for the sixth and unbroken eighth wicket partnership respectively. However, if any of those partnerships had lasted for a long time, Bangladesh could have easily gone past the 300-mark.
Unable to cash in on death overs:
Lack of partnerships were intertwined with a shortage of runs in the latter overs as the Tigers added only 62 in their last 10 overs. And in the last five, they made just 35, and that too thanks to some late blows from skipper Mashrafe. Another interesting fact is that since Tamim’s departure in the 28th over, Bangladesh lost four wickets till the 50th and managed to smash only a dozen boundaries. Among those, five came off the bat of Mashrafe.
Undoubtedly, there were nothing much for the bowlers at Edgbaston on Thursday. However, one must also point out that the Tigers bowlers remained bite-less throughout their innings. The Indian openers - Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan - had no problems whatsoever when they came out to chase the target. Mustafizur Rahman once again remained ineffective with his cutters and swing, alongside Taskin and Rubel Hossain, who both looked helpless.