Published: Thu, June 15, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Kohli urges India to remain on guard against 'dangerous' Bangladesh

Defending champions India will take on Bangladesh in the second semi-final of ICC Champions Trophy 2017 at Edgbaston, Birmingham on Thursday (today).

The fickle English weather was looming large as India made a decision to field against Bangladesh in the second semifinal of the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy in Birmingham on Thursday. He's been a total match-winner for India, won us so many big tournaments and big series, and this is just a testimony to the kind of talent he possesses.

One 'reserve' day has been kept by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for the final match of the tournament, but there will be none for the semi-finals.

Rohit Sharma scored 123, and was ably supported by captain Virat Kohli (96) as India thrashed Bangladesh by 9 wickets to reach the final.

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"As we've seen, a lot of teams have surprised the opposition and we're certainly not taking anything for granted. And our mindset does not differ", Kohli said on the eve of the match.

To cap things off, Shakib Al-Hasan and Mahmudullah's magnificent hundreds in a 224-run fifth-wicket stand won them the game against New Zealand after being 33/4 chasing 266.

Historically India's record against Bangladesh has always been virtuous as out of 32 ODIs between them, India bagged triumph in 26 matches whereas Bangladesh clinched victory in 5.

Kohli, who was brilliant in the knock out matches of ICC tournaments each time, said his attitude remains unaltered in all matches. But still, I believe we have a lot more to do in that level. We will not be going according to the past results.

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On Saturday, England's 40-run win via Duckworth Lewis method against Australia ensured that Bangladesh qualified for the semi-finals.

India opening batsman Rohit Sharma was limping during India's final practice, but Kohli hinted that they would name the same team that beat South Africa on Sunday, with spinner Ravichandran Ashwin keeping his place ahead of pace bowler Umesh Yadav. "They are a very risky side on their day and everyone realises that". Remember, Kohli has been at loggerheads with the Team India Coach Anil Kumble and a win in Champions trophy will strengthen his position. "At the end of the day it's a cricket game, so whoever plays well they will win", said the Jessore born player when asked about the pressure on his shoulders. "People count only winning, that's for sure, but I think if you look at both matches, I think we played at our best".

"We are playing overseas, and we are (having) success". India is quite strong with both batting and bowling lineup when compared to unstable Bangladesh. They lost the 2015 World Cup quarterfinal, 2016 Asia Cup (T20Is) and also at 2016 World T20. Ravi Ashwin's return to the side returned some much-needed balance to the side.

"We are confident. We have been playing fearless cricket all along".

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