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Bangladesh vs Pakistan 1st T20I: Who to win the race?

The match is scheduled to start at 7.00 pm local time, 3 pm Bangladesh Standard Time on Friday.

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Bangladesh vs Pakistan 1st T20I: Who to win the race?
Bangladesh and Pakistan to face first T20I. Photo: Gulf Today

In the first phase of the bilateral tour in Pakistan, Bangladesh are all set to encounter the home team in the first Twenty20 match of the series at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. The match is scheduled to start at 7.00 pm local time, 3 pm Bangladesh Standard Time on Friday (24th January).

It is going to be a successful move for Pakistan in their aim of having international cricket fully returned in the country after 2009 setback.

The world number one team in the shortest format of the game is seeking to hold on to the top of the ranking following six straight loses. Only a clean sweep against Bangladesh in the three match series could allow to be in the pick for this time.

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam also mentioned the phenomenon in the pre-match press briefing on Thursday and mentioned it as a ‘do-or-die’ situation for the team.

“The focus is to continue the number one ranking,” said Babar.

“We can hang on to that only if we win all three matches, so its a do-or-die situation and we have planned for that,” he told.

To break the losing streak, Pakistan recalled experienced duo Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Hafiz into the squad for the particular series.

Meanwhile Bangladesh captain Mahmudullah Riyad, after all the security-hassle, said they have just left the issue behind and focusing on cricket.

“We have been good,” said Bangladesh skipper Mahmudullah. “We want to do well in Pakistan. We feel good in Pakistan, so the focus will be on cricket.”

The touring side might reminisce the memories of beating India in the T20I also they eventually lost the series to the stronger opponents.

All the three T20 internationals will be played in Lahore on Friday, Saturday and Monday respectively before returning home. They will come back twice for two Tests, in Rawalpindi from February 7-12 and then in Karachi from April 3-9.

Pakistan Squad:

Babar Azam (c), Ahsan Ali, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Hasnain

Bangladesh Squad:

Tamim Iqbal, Mohammad Naim, Liton Das, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammad Mithun, Mahmudullah (c), Afif Hossain, Aminul Islam, Mustafizur Rahman, Al-Amin Hossain, Rubel Hossain/Hasan Mahmud.

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