Thursday, June 1, 2017

ICC Champions Trophy 2017 : England vs Bangladesh

The 8th edition of the ICC Champions Trophy tournament began in style with hosts England taking on Bangladesh. Good clean weather with a placid batting track at The Oval promising a high scoring match.

Eon Morgan won the toss & elected to bat, which looked like a good decision, as Bangladesh Buoyed by a 3rd wicket partnership of 166 runs between Tamim & Mushfiqur, Bangladesh ended up with a sound total of 305 for 6 wickets. At the end of 40 overs, at 223 for 3, the minnows looked good 330 - 340 runs, but faltered towards the end, around the 45th to 47th over & probably fell short by 25-30 runs. While Tamim put up a splendid century with 128 runs, Mushfiqur scored a breezy 79 runs.
This was Bangladesh's highest total against England in ODIs, & they could've gone further, but the last five overs were less productive, with Plunkett pulling back things for the hosts with four wickets.
There was an interesting skirmish between Ben Stokes & Tamim Iqbal in the middle, around the 32nd over - Stokes trying to rattle Tamim with some comments & then lightly tapping him on the shoulders, something the batsman didn't approve of - modern day sledging to unsettle the concentration of the batsmen ?? - looks like we may see quite a few of them in this tournament.
Good to see, Tamim keeping his cool & let his batting do the talking, & eventually getting a well deserved hundred.

England were quite organised in their reply & lost just two wickets in chasing the total, despite losing Jason Roy cheaply at the top - quite comfortably in the end with almost 3 overs to spare. Two solid century partnerships, first between Hales & Root for 159 runs & then another between Root & Morgan for 143 runs, got them home in style. Hales missed a well deserved hundred, holing out in the deep for 95, while Root was unbeaten till the end with a fantastic 133 to be adjusted the Man of the Match, as Capt Morgan piled up a brisk unbeaten 75.
Root, certainly was flawless & completely in control from the very beginning. Incidentally, this is the first time a total of 300+ has been chased successfully in Champions Trophy - the pitch looks like a belter & promises run feasts ahead.

Bangladesh will be ruing the lack of a quality fifth bowler in their ranks & ended up on the losing side, despite a well compiled 300+runs. I still think, they are capable of at least one upset this season.

England would be sending out a strong waring to all opponents on their batting depth & would relish home crowd support, as the tournament progresses.