India To See Off Bangladesh In Semi-Final

Dhawan has been outstanding

India will aim to reach the ICC Champions Trophy final for the second time on the bounce in their pursuit to defend their crown.

Bangladesh stand in their way after the Tigers managed to qualify for the semi-final by defeating New Zealand in their final Group A contest, while also receiving help from England who eliminated Australia from contention in their clash at Edgbaston.

As a result, the second semi-final will be contested by two sides from the sub-continent, who have collided a number of times over the past few years.

India produced their best performance of the competition against South Africa, crushing the Proteas by eight wickets, although they were handed several wickets by suicidal running by AB de Villiers and company.

However, Shikhar Dhawan continued his excellent tournament thus far, while Virat Kohli returned to form with a fine innings to guide his side over the line at The Oval.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar enjoyed his best performance since arriving in England and will be eager to repeat his level of display against the Tigers, although Mashrafe Mortaza’s men could spring another surprise.

Bangladesh looked to be heading towards a defeat at the hands of New Zealand when they were reduced to 33-4, but a record-breaking partnership between Shakib Al Hasan and Mahmudullah allowed their side to produce a stunning five-wicket victory.

After taking the scalp of the Black Caps – the Tigers will be determined to add one more in the form of Kohli’s team when they face off at Edgbaston.

India’s Top Batsman

Dhawan has been outstanding

Credit: Reuters

Dhawan has been excellent in the Champions Trophy thus far and has not recorded a score below 68 in his three innings. The 31-year-old seems to thrive under the pressure of a major tournament and in English conditions, having top scored four years ago when India triumphed in the competition.

He has been the steady presence at the top of the order that has allowed his team-mates to play around. The opener has not blown anyone away with the rate of his scoring, but by providing a solid anchor at the crease it has allowed Kohli and Rohit Sharma tee off in their two wins.

Dhawan’s consistency has been extremely impressive as has not had difficulty against any type of bowler – either pace or spin. As a result, he should be able to continue to rack up the run in his pursuit of top scoring at the tournament for the second time on the bounce.

His odds of +333   with Bet365 provide excellent value given the form that he is in and the familiarity he will have against the Tigers, notching 60 in their warm-up match before the tournament.

Kohli bounced back to form against the Proteas with a calm innings of 75. He had been dismissed for a duck against Sri Lanka for the first time since 2014 and due to off-the-field distractions there would have been quiet concerns about his form.

However, he took his time to rediscover his touch against South Africa to edge his side towards a comfortable victory. Kohli will push Dhawan all the way to be top scorer once again.

Bangladesh’s Top Batsman

Al Hasan rose to the occasion with a brilliant century to pull his team out of trouble and put them on the brink of victory before he was dismissed for 114.

The Tigers were reeling at 33-4 and staring down the barrel of a crushing defeat, but the all-rounder combined with Mahmudullah to notch Bangladesh’s highest ODI partnership.

Al Hasan scored at an impressive rate as he knocked the ball around the ground with relative ease, firing 12 boundaries, including one six. It was arguably the 30-year-old’s finest moment for the Tigers during his lengthy career that spans 176 ODI matches.

Mahmudullah was an equal partner in the outstanding effort. The 31-year-old notched his third ODI century, displaying great poise at the crease along with the power to find the boundary. He ended the run chase to guide his side past the post with 16 balls to spare.

Bangladesh will not want to rely on the duo too much to get into the final, with more expected from their top order, although if they continue to play as they did it might be enough with support.

Tamim Iqbal had been exceptional in the opening two matches, blasting a century against England and scoring 95 against Australia. However, he was dismissed for only a duck in the clash with New Zealand, but expect him to return to form for the semi-final at odds of +333   with BetBright.

India’s Top Bowler

Ashwin could turn his side to victory

After a poor outing against Sri Lanka, India will have been relieved to see Kumar return to his best in their victory over South Africa. He took two wickets for just 23 runs in his eight overs, providing a threat with the ball, but also the control that he lacked against the Lions.

The 27-year-old performed extremely well against Bangladesh in the warm-up contest before the tournament, taking three wickets for 13 runs – claiming the vital strike of Iqbal at the top of the order. He will be expected to thrive once again in English conditions at Edgbaston, but the presence of Ravichandran Ashwin could prevent him from running through the order.

India called upon their off-spinner to come back into the side against the Proteas after their defeat to Sri Lanka. He missed the opening two matches of the competition, but displayed no signs of rust as he removed Hashim Amla to break South Africa’s opening partnership of 76.

That ability to remove set batsmen will be vital to his side’s hopes of advancing to the final. Therefore backing Ashwin at odds of 4/1 with BetFred to lead the wicket column for Kohli’s men is the option to take.

Winner

India will have been delighted to see Bangladesh advance over Australia given their strong record against them in their recent matches. Their victory over the Tigers in the warm-up contest was more than convincing and should send Kohli’s men into the contest full of confidence.

Bangladesh have to produce a flawless performance and will need special outings from their key players to deliver another surprise win to reach their first final.

Kohli’s side have too much quality for the Tigers to contend with on this occasion, especially in English conditions. As a result, the odds of -400   with Betfair is the best bet to take for value.

Tips Summary

India To Beat Bangladesh ICC Champions Trophy Semi-Final
Thursday 15th June 10:30am BST
Odds: -400

Shikhar Dhawan To Be India’s Top Batsman
Thursday 15th June 10:30am BST
Odds: +333

Tamim Iqbal To Be Bangladesh’s Top Batsman
Thursday 15th June 10:30am BST
Odds: +333

Ravichandran Ashwin To Be India’s Top Bowler
Thursday 15th June 10:30am BST
Odds: +400