The visitors were precise in their planning and execution in the first two games. Tamim won both tosses and put West Indies in, after which his bowlers piled on the pressure by bowling a large number of dot balls in the first 20 overs. It forced the West Indies batters into playing big shots in the middle overs, and Bangladesh caught most of their chances to restrict the hosts to low totals.
The Bangladesh batting hasn’t been tested like it was in the Tests and T20Is. Tamim provided quick starts in both games, while Najmul Hossain Shanto also contributed with runs. They haven’t had to set a target yet in this series, and the challenge of batting first is one to watch out for.
West Indies, on the other hand, struggled twice while batting first. Shai Hope, who has a particularly great record against Bangladesh, looked out of sorts, and that has hurt the hosts. Kyle Mayers, Shamarh Brooks, Brandon King and Nicholas Pooran have also been unable to contribute, despite having made runs in the Tests and T20Is earlier on this tour.
Captain Pooran has a fight on his hands. West Indies have lost 10 out of 14 ODIs this year, and they haven’t beaten Bangladesh in this format since December 2018.
West Indies LLLLL (last five completed ODIs, most recent first)
In the spotlight
Shai Hope‘s ODI average against Bangladesh dropped from 94.75 to less than 80 after his low scores in the first two ODIs. Hope was the backbone of the West Indies batting in the previous two series against Pakistan and the Netherlands, and the hosts will hope that he returns to form to help them avoid a 3-0 drubbing.
Offspinner Mehidy Hasan Miraz has been the leader of Bangladesh’s bowling attack in this series. Ranked No. 6 in the world with an average of 19.00, Mehidy is Bangladesh’s top ODI wicket-taker since 2020. He’s Tamim’s go-to bowler in tight situations, and he’s also a handy batter and a gun fielder.
There could be an opening for 25-year-old batter Keacy Carty, who played against Pakistan recently, in the West Indies middle order.
West Indies (probable): 1 Kyle Mayers, 2 Shai Hope, 3 Shamarh Brooks, 4 Brandon King, 5 Nicholas Pooran (capt & wk), 6 Rovman Powell, 7 Akeal Hosein, 8 Keemo Paul, 9 Romario Shepherd, 10 Alzarri Joseph, 11 Gudakesh Motie
Tamim Iqbal said that Bangladesh would look to give the players on their bench some game time, so Taskin Ahmed, Anamul Haque and Ebadot Hossain are likely to get their chances.
Bangladesh (probable): 1 Tamim Iqbal (capt), 2 Anamul Haque, 3 Litton Das, 4 Mahmudullah, 5 Afif Hossain, 6 Nurul Hasan (wk), 7 Mehidy Hasan Miraz, 8 Mosaddek Hossain, 9 Nasum Ahmed, 10 Taskin Ahmed, 11 Ebadot Hossain
Pitch and conditions
A pitch in Providence is expected to offer turn for the spinners once again, like in the first two ODIs, and there is the threat of rain as well.
Stats and trivia
“The most important thing is to test our bench strength. We don’t do it often in the Bangladesh team. I think it is completely fine for me to miss a match. If we don’t test our bench strength now, then when will we do it?”
Bangladesh captain Tamim Iqbal
“We are very disappointed. We can’t make any excuses. We have to find a way to counteract these spinners. The boys are trying, but it is very important to find a way to go forward. We got one more game to play, we continue to learn.”
West Indies bowling coach Roddy Estwick
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84