Match preview: Australia v Bangladesh

2015 World Cup

Venue

The'Gabba, Brisbane

Team news

This is the game all of Australia, aside from George Bailey, has been waiting for. Skipper Michael Clarke will return from his hamstring injury, having been out of most of the action since the first Test against India in November.

Clarke has had to work his way back to fitness, and this game was his deadline to prove he could cope with a full game. He has done so to the satisfaction of the team bosses, though the Brisbane weather is conspiring against him.

A massive cyclone is due to hit the Queensland area on Saturday, at the time the game is due to be played, and while Clarke has expressed optimism that the storm will pass quickly, local groundstaff are not as positive.

If they do get to play, the Tigers – who are an outside favourite among Asia Bet punters – will be buoyed by their recent win over Afghanistan. Though not the most stringent of opposition, the Bangladeshis did well to win by 105 runs. If the game is rained off, they will get a point they'd likely not have scored otherwise.

This is bad news for the Aussies' hopes of finishing top of the group, which also contains a rampant New Zealand. They would have been banking on the full two points to make sure of an easier path in the next round.

Last encounter

The Tigers have beaten the Aussies just once in 19 ODIs, and that was in 2005. Their most recent clash was in 2011, in a three-match series that the Aussies swept. They won the third game by 66 runs, with a Mike Hussey ton putting the game beyond reach. The Tigers did make 295 though, as Mitchell Johnson took three wickets.

World Cup meetings

The sides did not meet in 2011's event, but they did clash in North Sound in 2007. It was the Super Eights, and the game was reduced to 22 overs per side. Bangladesh made just 104 for six, and Matty Hayden and Adam Gilchrist chased that down in 13.5 overs.

Key players

For the hosts, they will look to spearhead paceman Mitchell Johnson to get rid of the Tigers as quickly as possible. Assuming he's not rested, he'll strike feat into the stoutest Tiger's heart. He took two wickets in the opening game against England.

For Bangladesh, there is only one choice in Shakib-al-Hasan. He's their best player, not point in thinking otherwise. Against the UAE he made 63, and then took two wickets in his side's win. The Aussies don't really like spin, so he'll be a danger with the ball.

Umpires

Billy Bowden and Kumar Dharmasena, Ian Gould (3rd umpire), Ranjan Madugalle (match referee)

Weather

Not good! A cyclone is due to hit the area and remain for much of the day, and even the ground curator has admitted that things do not look good for any kind of game, let alone a full one.

Prediction

A wash-out. If there's play, then the Aussies will win.

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