Bangladesh U-19 confident of facing Windies in semis

Mirpur (Bangladesh), Feb 9 (IANS) Young Bangladesh batsman Joyraz Sheikh feels they are comfortable facing the West Indies in the semi-finals of the Under-19 World Cup here on Thursday.

The West Indies set up a clash against the hosts in the last four, beating Pakistan by five wickets in the quarter-finals at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium in Fatullah on Monday, reports bdnews24.com.

A few days before the youth World Cup, Bangladesh colts thumped the Caribbean team 3-0 in a home series.

On Sunday, Bangladesh wicketkeeper-batsman Zakir Hasan, who scored 75 in their six-wicket win over Nepal in the quarters, said his team would prefer playing against the West Indies. But Joyraz insisted otherwise.

“Absolutely not. We had no such target. We were prepared for any opponent. But playing against West Indies will be favourable for us. We’ve played and won many matches against them. We know their cricketers very well – that will be our advantage,” he said.

Bangladesh’s assistant coach Sohel Islam, however, thinks the West Indies are in good form.

“There is no reason to take (West Indies) lightly. In a 16-team tournament, they have made it to the semi-finals – meaning they are among the best four. Our advantage is that we played against this team before the World Cup. We know about their strengths and weaknesses. We will plan accordingly,” Islam said.

Bangladesh, who have progressed to the semi-finals of a world event for the first time, will take on the Caribbean team on Thursday.

India and Sri Lanka are playing the first semi-final here on Tuesday.

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