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ICC World Cup Set To Ignite Cricketing World


The four year wait if finally over.

Two of the three co-hosts – India and Bangladesh will battle it out this evening in the first game of the 49-game long 2011 Cricket World Cup.

India is widely considered as one of the pre-tournament favourites, while Bangladesh has proven to be rather unpredictable, especially in this shorter version of the game.

Events unfolding in the last event four years ago culminated in euphoria on one side of the Bengal border, and despair on the other. Tamim Iqbal, the stalwart of then little-fancied Bangladesh landed a blow in a series of unpredictability that would eventually eliminate India.

Fast forward four years and we have an Indian side that is ranked number one, coupled with arguably the most experienced XI in the game.

However, with that the stakes are somewhat different with India once again carrying the weight of expectation of over one billion cricket enthusiasts.

There will also have been a feeling of responsibility no Bangladesh captain has ever faced before. For the first time ever, Bangladesh is expected to go beyond the first round of a World Cup.

The pitch used for the practice game between Bangladesh and Pakistan in Mirpur earlier on had turn for the spinners. Not much is known about the surface for Saturday but, as per the majority of pitches at the tournament, it is expected to aid the slow bowlers.

Bangladeshcarries some good form into the tournament on the back of their wins away to New Zealand, while India seemed somewhat unsettled in their series against South Africa. With that said, they did recover well to dispatch defending champions Australia in their warm-up.

Bangladesh (probable): 1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Imrul Kayes, 3 Junaid Siddique, 4 Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), 5 Raqibul Hasan 6 Shakib Al Hasan (capt), 7 Mahmudullah, 8 Naeem Islam 9 Abdur Razzak, 10 Shafiul Islam, 11 Rubel Hossain.

India (probable): 1 Virender Sehwag, 2 Sachin Tendulkar, 3 Gautam Gambhir, 4 Virat Kohli/Suresh Raina, 5 Yuvraj Singh, 6 MS Dhoni (capt & wk), 7 Yusuf Pathan, 8 Harbhajan Singh, 9 Zaheer Khan, 10 Ashish Nehra, 11 Munaf Patel.

On the betting stakes cast your eye onto one of the most impressive batting lineups in world cricket.

Sehwag, Tendulkar, Gambhir, Kohli, Yuvraj, Dhoni and Yusuf are going to set this tournament alight.

Most of India's top order has done well in Mirpur, with Gambhir, Dhoni, Kohli and Raina all averaging over 50, and scoring at least one century at the venue.

Look to back Sehwag to top score here, as this man can hit the ball a mile, and nowhere does he enjoy it more than at the big event. Suresh Raina, who proved to be somewhat of a rabbit in South Africa, is also lethal in the sub continent- as proven by his astounding IPL form.

If betting on any Bangladesh individuals you will earn your bread by placing on one of the many top class spinners at their disposal.

On slow tracks that turn, with batsmen needing to create the pace, they will very likely be controlling the pace of the game.

This opener is primed to be a blowout with the build-up to the World Cup very visibly having been more intense in Bangladesh than in either India or Sri Lanka- a sign of what this tournament means to this nation.

India rarely play in front of a crowd that outweighs their in support, however this is likely to happen tomorrow.

The venue is Bangladesh’s most successful; with the tigers having won 18 matches here- three times the number they've won at their next most successful venue.





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