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Stuart Dalgleish 10th Mar 2011 - 19:13

England can go through with a Bang

Bangladesh v England - Friday 09:00 live on Sky Sports 1

After another nail-biting match against South Africa, England (2/9) are on the verge of qualification and can progress if they beat joint-hosts Bangladesh (10/3).

Andy Flower's men have been involved in four incredible games and they are doing wonders for this World Cup with their entertainment value.

Since their win over SA though they've been dealt two huge blows, with Kevin Pietersen and Stuart Broad picking up injuries and returning to the UK.

Both players will be missed, but their replacements aren't exactly too shabby - Eoin Morgan (6/1 top England batsman) is one of the best One-Day players in the world and Chris Tremlett (7/2 top England bowler) will really hit the deck hard and cause problems for Bangladesh's batsmen.

What is a problem for England though is what to do now at the top of the order as Morgan isn't a like-for-like replacement like Tremlett is.

England have a few options for who to open with the captain Andrew Strauss (3/1 top Eng bat).

Matt Prior (6/1) played there for a few of the ODI games against Australia but didn't have great success, Ravi Bopara (9/2) has become a reliable player in the team but I'm not sure he can cope with the extra pressure, Jonathan Trott (7/2) just keeps churning out runs but is perhaps more suited to number 3, so my choice would be Ian Bell (4/1).

Bell, unlike some of the others, has had plenty of experience coming in at all sorts of different positions and just sees the ball so well early in the innings; he could be perfect as opener.

That would then leave Morgan to bat in Bell's usual position of 4 and have the chance to punish Bangladesh again; the Irish-born star enjoyed one of his best ODI performances against the Tigers, scoring a sublime century against them a year ago with some great switch-hitting.

So while Morgan is expected to go straight in to the team, I don't think it's a guarantee that Tremlett will be involved.

When called up during the Ashes, he made himself impossible to drop with some brilliant bowling, but the subsequent ODI series he wasn't at his best and there's the possibility that England might want to load their attack with spinners.

Graeme Swann (9/4 top Eng bowler), James Anderson (10/3), who returned to form against South Africa, and Tim Bresnan (10/3) will all play, and despite leaking 46 runs against South Africa, Michael Yardy (13/2) is still a useful player for England and is worth keeping in the team for batting skills too, although he is yet to shine so far this tournament and as such is 25/1 for top England batsman.

It's possible that James Tredwell (5/1) could get a call-up as a third spinner, but Andrew Strauss will want to see the wicket first before making that call.

Bangladesh will likely line-up with their spin-heavy attack again, and they have some pride to restore after a shambolic performance against West Indies.

The Tigers were all out for just 58 thanks to some dreadful batting and sensational bowling, including a hat-trick, from Kemar Roach.

Shakib Al Hasan (11/4 top Bangladesh bowler) will want a big response from his team, I thought they would be in with a shout of making the knockout stages but they don't look like they can cope with the pressure of hosting a big tournament.

Only Tamim Iqbal (3/1 top Bang bat) and Al Hasan (5/1) have scored fifties and the usually reliable Imrul Kayes (4/1) is averaging just 17.

If the batsman can rediscover their form, and the bowlers get some turn then Bangladesh will give England problems, as it is I just think they're a little deflated right now and the Three Lions should take advantage, 2/9 is a big price for a side of England's quality.

 

 
 
 

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