India will be high on confidence after the impressive win over defending champions Australia in their opening match at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup and will look to carry forward the momentum against Bangladesh in their second Group A encounter on Monday.

Leg-spinner Poonam Yadav’s sensational spell helped India beat Australia by 17 runs in the tournament opener on Friday but the Harmanpreet Kaur-led side can’t afford to take Bangladesh lightly.

After all, Salma Khatun’s side are reigning Asian champions in the format, having famously beaten India twice at 2018 Asia Cup.

But, a lot has changed for both teams since then and the Tigers had to reach the World Cup via qualifying while India reached the semi-finals of the 2018 World T20.

Bangladesh, playing their first match, are looking for their first semi-final appearance at the World Cup while an unbeaten start will enhance India’s semi-final chances. This will be the third T20 World Cup match between them and India have won the previous two encounters, having batted first on each of those occasions.

Also Read: India can’t be complacent after Australia win, says Veda Krishnamurthy

In the last five meetings between the two sides, India have a 3-2 lead and a win on Monday will take them closer to the knock-out rounds from the five-team group.

India will, however, need to improve their batting performance as they scored a meagre 132 against Australia. The Indian batting suffers from inconsistency and they could have lost the match against Australia also, but for Poonam Yadav’s (4/19) exploits.

The match against Bangladesh offers the batting lineup a chance to get a good score under their belt, with 16-year-old opener Shafali Verma’s attacking approach at the top of the order likely to be the key.

Captain Harmanpreet and opener Smriti Mandhana, both of whom did well in the tri-series before this World Cup, contributed little with the bat in the previous match and both will look to continue their good streaks at ICC events.

Another key middle-order batter Deepti Sharma came good against Australia with an unbeaten 49 off 46 balls but India will hope Veda Krishnamurthy finds form. For Bangladesh, the key players will be all-rounder Jahanara Alam and top-order batter Fargana Hoque.

The 26-year-old seasoned Hoque has a T20 International hundred to her name and had played a major role in Bangladesh’s group stage win over India in 2018 T20 Asia Cup.

Alam is another key player for Bangladesh and she was a part of the IPL Velocity team under Mithali Raj in India’s domestic Women’s T20 Challenge tournament in Jaipur last year.

Bangladesh captain Salma Khatun, their most experienced player, can chip in with both bat and ball.

In another Group A match on Monday, Australia will take on Sri Lanka here. Both the teams have lost their opening matches of the tournament. The Islanders lost to New Zealand by seven wickets on Saturday.

Key Stats

  • This will be the third ICC Women’s T20 World Cup match between India and Bangladesh; India have won each of the previous two encounters, having batted first on each of those occasions.
  • This will be Bangladesh’s fourth ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, each of their two wins at the tournament came in their inaugural edition (2014 against Sri Lanka and Ireland).
  • India have managed to record victory in five of their last six ICC Women’s T20 World Cup (L1), including a win last time out versus Australia; they had endured a three-match losing steak in the tournament before this current run.
  • Salma Khatun has bowled three maidens at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, Rumana Ahmed (1) is the only other player to do so for Bangladesh.
  • Poonam Yadav comes into this match having taken figures of 4/19 in India’s opening game of this ICC Women’s T20 World Cup against Australia, in doing so becoming the first Indian bowler to take 20+ wickets at the tournament (22). 

With PTI and ICC Inputs