| Bangladesh coach Dav Whatmore with wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim during a training session in Port of Spain on Tuesday. (AFP)
Port of Spain: It’s not Bangladesh’s performance against India but the presence of Dav Whatmore that has kept Sri Lanka wary ahead of their match on Wednesday.
Sri Lanka’s World Cup winning coach has already plotted a coup in the tournament and is again hoping to come up with something special. From Sanath Jayasuriya to Muttiah Muralidharan, everyone in the Lankan squad still holds Whatmore in high esteem.
“He is a great coach… He has done wonders with Bangladesh. Anything can happen in a one-day game. We can’t take any team lightly,” has been the common refrain in the Lankan ranks.
With their new-found confidence and positive attitude, Bangladesh are hoping to keep the momentum going. “We have a very good chance of making the Super Eight. We have to make good use of the opportunity that has come our way. We cannot afford to look back. We will take the field to win,” said captain Habibul Bashar.
Bangladesh are unlikely to make any changes to the side that won against India. Still basking in the glory of their dramatic win, the players will need to keep their cool and focus on the basics.
Sri Lanka, who have a well-balanced mixture of experience and youth, will look to more or less confirm their berth in the Super Eight ahead of Friday’s key clash against India.
Both teams will wish to bowl first on a wicket that has appeared to be damp in the morning session. Mashrafe Mortaza rocked India with a fine spell and the Lankans are not willing to take him lightly either. “He has good pace and can move the ball appreciably,” said Sanath Jayasuriya.
The conditions will also work to favour Chaminda Vaas and Lasith Malinga. “The wicket is a bit spongy. We’ll have to bowl in the right areas,” felt Vaas.
Bangladesh’s bowling may lack variety and depth but their batting can stand up to any challenge. That has been proved against India and the Lankans are not going to take any chances
Sri Lanka (likely): Upul Tharanga, Sanath Jayasuirya, Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Maravan Atapattu, Tillekeratne Dilshan, Fervez Mahroof, Russel Arnold, Muttiah Muralidharan, Chaminda Vaas, Lasith Malinga.
Bangladesh (likely): Tamim Iqbal, Shahriar Nafees, Mushfiqur Rahim, Aftab Ahmed, Saqibul Hasan, Habibul Bashar, Mohammed Ashraful, Mohammed Rafique, Mashrafe Mortaza, Abdul Razzak, Syed Rasel.
Umpires: Steve Davis (Aus) and Daryl Harper (Aus). TV: Ian Howell (Eng).
Match Referee: Jeff Crowe (NZ).
Match starts 7 pm (IST).