Bangladesh to open ICC World Cup 2019 campaign in London

Last event’s quarter-finalists Bangladesh will play their opening two matches of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 at The Oval in London when they will take on South Africa and New Zealand on 2 and 5 June, respectively, the International Cricket Council confirmed today.

Bangladesh’s match against New Zealand will be one of their two day/night fixtures in the 46-day tournament, which will be played on a single-league format with the top four sides progressing to the 9 and 11 July semi-finals. The final will be staged at Lord’s on 14 July.

“I expect this to be the most competitive World Cup I have been a part of because of the format,” said Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza.

When the World Cup was last staged in England and Wales in 1999, Bangladesh had defeated Pakistan at Northampton, a victory which later turned out to be the cornerstone of their Test status. In next year’s event, the two sides will lock horns under Lord’s floodlights on 5 July in their final league matches.

Bangladesh’s six matches between the London fixtures will be in Cardiff (against England on 8 June), Bristol (against Sri Lanka on 11 June), Taunton (against the Windies on 17 June), Nottingham (against Australia on 20 June), in Southampton (against Afghanistan on 24 June) and in Birmingham (against India on 2 July).

Looking to next year’s World Cup, Bangladesh’s captain Mashrafe Mortaza said: “I expect this to be the most competitive World Cup I have been a part of because of the format. I guess for the first time all the ten nations will be backing themselves to qualify for the last four of the event as each team is capable of beating the other on any given day.

“We have fond memories of playing in England and Wales. Some of Bangladesh cricket’s best ODI moments have come here including victories over Pakistan, Australia, England and New Zealand. Only last year we had made it to the semifinals of the ICC Champions Trophy and that will really motivate and inspire us.

“We have a pretty good idea about the conditions. Besides, the large Bangladeshi expat community in the UK have been amazing in terms of supporting and encouraging the Bangladesh Cricket Team and we feel comfortable whenever we are there. With the quality we have and with the right preparation, I am confident that we will put up a stiff challenge to our opponents in the World Cup.”

Bangladesh have played 32 matches in the World Cup out which they have won 11 and lost 20 for a success percentage of 35.48. Their one match was a no-result.

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