Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will have to enter at the group stage of the 2020 T20 World Cup, with Afghanistan earning direct qualification to the Super 12s.

The top 10 sides in the Twenty20 world rankings earn an automatic place in the tournament, which will be held in Australia, and they will be joined by six qualifiers.

However, only the top eight go straight through to the Super 12s, with the ninth and 10th-ranked sides at the cut-off required to compete in the groups along with the qualifiers.

Ranked eighth in the world, Afghanistan will avoid the group stage for the first time in their history, while Sri Lanka - champions in 2014 - face an elongated path to what they hope will be a fourth final.

"It is a bit disappointing that we have not been able to ensure a direct Super 12s berth but I'm confident that we will do well in the tournament," Sri Lanka captain Lasith Malinga told the ICC.

"Having played three finals and winning once, it is natural that everyone expected us to finish in the top eight but we have to take the opportunity in the extra matches of the group stage and prepare well for the knockout matches."

Bangladesh have never reached the last four of the tournament, but skipper Shakib Al Hasan has high hopes for 2020.

"We have not secured a direct Super 12s berth but I'm confident that we will do well in the tournament by going through the group stage," he said.

"We are a side capable of beating the best on our day and I see no reason why we can't go far in the tournament. There is still some time and we will use it to be at our best for the T20 World Cup.

"We won a T20 series against the West Indies, the world champions, in their backyard not so long ago. That performance has given us a lot of belief in our Twenty20 capabilities."

Windies pacer Sheldon Cottrell will reportedly replace fellow fast bowler Oshane Thomas in the Rangpur Riders squad for the upcoming Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) after the latter, after an agreement with Cricket West Indies did not apply for a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the regional body. 

The 21-year-old Thomas was drafted by the Rangpur Riders in the October BPL draft and was expected to line-up alongside veteran batting star Chris Gayle for the new season.  The competition is expected to bowl off on January 5 and run through to February 9.

The bowler has, however, been refused permission to take part in the competition by Cricket West Indies (CWI) Thomas is currently a part of the Jamaica squad for this season’s regional four-day competition, which got under way in early December.  Though the Windies are yet to name a squad for the upcoming England tour, but the bowler could also feature at some point during that series that will begin on January 23.  Thomas featured for the West Indies in both recent Asian tours against India and Bangladesh, while Cottrell featured for the team during the Bangladesh series.  Cottrell claimed seven wickets in the three-match T20 series.

The Rangpur Riders, the competition’s defending champions will also add Zimbabwean all-rounder Sean Williams to the squad.

Umpire Tanvir Ahmed the official, who drew the ire of Windies captain Carlos Brathwaite, after several questionable calls during the team’s decisive T20I against Bangladesh, has apologised for some of the decisions.

Ahmed caused plenty of controversy on Saturday after twice calling Windies pacer Oshane Thomas for a no ball.  The umpire deemed Thomas to have overstepped the crease in the final ball of the fourth over, as Bangladesh chased 191.  Ahmed had also called a no-ball on the previous delivery.  Both calls resulted in free hits, which saw the balls dispatched for a pair of sixes.

The West Indies went to win the match by 50 runs but Brathwaite was far from a happy man.  The second no-ball call led the Windies captain to protest against the decision, which held up play for about eight minutes.  Ahmed has since apologised for the errors.

"In terms of a no-ball, there is always the issue of the foot and the line being close to each other," Tanvir told Prothom Alo. "And if the bowler jumps quickly, there are occasions when it is difficult to spot it. I am new to international cricket, I made a mistake.

"If you look at my past, I don't have a bad history. It was one mistake. Inshallah, I will come back well. Every person has good days and bad days. Yesterday I had a bad day. The match just ended yesterday. I am not focusing on anything else. I am thinking about my mistake."

West Indies captain Carlos Brathwaite will accept any sanctions that come his way after holding up play to question incorrect no-ball calls during the third Twenty20 against Bangladesh.

Umpire Tanvir Ahmed ruled West Indies paceman Oshane Thomas had twice overstepped the front line in the early stages of the home side's run chase in Mirpur.

However, on each occasion television replays showed the umpire had mistakenly penalised the bowler, with the second call seeing Bangladesh batsman Liton Das reprieved after chipping a catch to mid-off.

Both free-hits were hit for six and, after being informed of the errors by the dressing room, Brathwaite spoke to Tanvir and fellow on-field official Masudur Rahman before holding a conversation with match referee Jeff Crowe on the edge of the outfield, delaying proceedings for around eight minutes.

The tourists' skipper revealed after the game - which West Indies won by 50 runs to clinch a 2-1 series victory - how he had spoken to Crowe about the standard of officiating after the previous game, during which they had twice successfully overturned lbw decisions with the assistance of the review system.

Tanvir had also been on duty on Thursday, along with Gazi Sohel. All three T20 fixtures were officiated by umpires from Bangladesh.

"Sanctions may come and go, but if you don't stand for something, you fall for everything," Brathwaite told the media after the game.

"If the sanctions are to be handed, I would gladly take it. My team-mates need to be stood up for and as the captain of the ship, I will stand up for them.

"I went to the match referee after the second game. I didn't think the 50-50 decisions were going in our favour. Those decisions went for Bangladesh.

"I never ever want to accuse someone of cheating. I will stop short of that. They are professionals as well. I don't think they would go out there to be biased or, for lack of a better word, cheat.

"I didn't accuse them of cheating but I made my point clear to the match referee that every 50-50 decision in the ODI series and T20I series up to that point went against us.

"Traditionally, we haven't played the best cricket, whether red or white ball. But I found that every time I have been playing for the West Indies, the decisions have hampered us. It happened earlier in the fourth over, so a point needed to be made."

Brathwaite did praise Crowe for his patience while also insisting he had no intention of taking his team off the field at any stage.

"I must commend the match referee," he added. "After we had some stern words, it was resolved. We worked too hard for my team to walk off the field or forfeit the game or series.

"The decision was to stay on, fight on and finish the game."

Keemo Paul claimed the best Twenty20 international figures for a West Indies bowler to seal a series victory over Bangladesh after a devastating innings from Evin Lewis in Mirpur.

The Tigers won the Test and ODI series' against the Windies, but the tourists gained a measure of revenge on Saturday.

Lewis blasted 89 off only 36 balls - including eight sixes - as West Indies posted 190 all out in the decider, Shakib Al Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman and Mahmudullah taking three wickets apiece.

Paul then took centre stage with magnificent figures of 5-15 as Bangladesh were bowled out for 140, Liton Das top scoring with 43 after an early stroke of luck when he was caught in the deep but a no-ball was wrongly called for the second time in the over.

Lewis took no time to get his eye in, smashing Abu Hider for four sixes down the ground in a third over which cost 27 runs after Shakib won the toss and put West Indies in.

Shakib (3-37) ended an opening stand of 76 by cleaning up Shai Hope (23), but Lewis brought up his half-century from only 18 balls in a brutal onslaught.

The clean-striking Lewis looked set for a third T20 international hundred, but missed out when he was bowled by Mahmudullah in the 10th over attempting a slog-sweep.

West Indies - who handed a debut to Sherfane Rutherford - lost their way after the opener departed, Nicholas Pooran's 29 the only other notable contribution as the Tigers hit back well.

There was controversy early in Bangladesh's run chase when umpire Tanvir Ahmed twice called no-ball in an over from Oshane Thomas despite the paceman having part of his foot behind the line, the second giving Das a let-off after he was caught in the deep.

Both free hits were dispatched for six to add insult to injury, ensuring Thomas' over cost 30 runs, but Fabian Allen removed Soumya Sarkar in the next over and Shakib first ball to soften the blow after the Windies had protested with the umpires.

Bangladesh were 89-7 in the 10th when Paul removed Das and Ariful Haque in successive balls and Hider's quickfire 22 was in vain as the hosts fell well short.

Windies skipper Carlos Brathwaite has vowed the team is determined to get back to the type of effort in the field that secured a lopsided win over Bangladesh in the first T20 international last week.

A major criticism of the team following Thursday lopsided effort stemmed from a sloppy performance in the field, which contributed in part to a record 211 runs for the Bangladeshi’s.  In pursuit the regional team was dismissed for 175.

With the series now tied at 1-1 the Windies must find a way to turn their fortunes around to not leave Bangladesh empty-handed following losses to the Asian team in both the ODI and Test series.  

“We didn’t have our best day in the field but that doesn’t mean we’re a bad fielding team,” Brathwaite said following the fixture.

“We’re still as good a fielding team as we were in the first game. That display was excellent, we just had an off night tonight. We should bring our A-game come the last game and try to win the series 2-1,” he added.

The third and final match of the series will be held at Dhaka on Saturday.

Windies captain Carlos Brathwaite believes a poor start to the second T20 international against Bangladesh was a major contributing factor in a 36-run loss on Thursday.

 Sakib Al Hasan stroked an unbeaten 42 off 26 balls before claiming 4 for 21 as Bangladesh blasted a record 211 for four, before dismissing the Windies for 175. 

Opener Liton Das struck 60 off 43 balls while Sakib and Mahmudullah, who remained unbeaten on 43 off 21 balls, to guide Bangladesh to the record total.

Shakib and his deputy Mahmudullah Riyad also shared 89 runs in just seven overs in an unbroken fifth-wicket stand after Bangladesh lost their fifth wicket for 120 in 13 overs.

"We didn't get it right in the first six overs, so we were always chasing, but credit to Bangladesh for playing well,” Brathwaite said.

Cottrell finished with 2-38 as the most successful West Indies bowler.

The third and final match of the series will be held at same ground on Saturday.

Shakib Al Hasan was the star of the show for Bangladesh as a 36-run victory in Mirpur tied their Twenty20 series against West Indies.

The Windies cruised to an eight-wicket win in the opening instalment of the three-match series on Monday but found Shakib in inspired form this time around.

The Bangladesh skipper hit an unbeaten 42 as his side set the tourists a winning target of 212, before taking an impressive 5-20 as the Windies were skittled for 175.

Carlos Brathwaite's side found Bangladesh tough to break down, with the hosts reaching 110 runs in just over 11 overs for the loss of only one wicket - Tamim Iqbal dismissed for 15.

Soumya Sarkar (32) and Liton Das (60) both fell in a particularly fruitful 12th over for Sheldon Cottrell (2-38), while Mushfiqur Rahim was dismissed for a single in the next set of six.

That left Shakib and Mahmudullah (43 not out) at the crease and the pair combined for an unbeaten partnership of 91 to take Bangladesh to 211-4 from their 20 overs.

Having made a significant contribution to setting the target, Shakib then set about ensuring the Windies could not reach it, claiming the wickets of Nicholas Pooran (14), Shimron Hetmyer (19), Darren Bravo (2), Brathwaite (7) and Fabian Allen (0).

Shai Hope (36) and Rovman Powell (50) had showed some resistance but could do nothing to prevent Shakib's ruthless demolition of the Windies' middle order.

The sides face each other in the decider at the same venue on Saturday.

Bangladesh opener Soumya Sarker insists the team is ready to battle to salvage the T20 series against the Windies after going down by eight wickets in the first match at Sylhet International Stadium on Monday.

Despite dominating the regional team for large parts of the tour so far, the Bangladeshi’s were able to find very little answers against the Caribbean team.  Windies fast bowler Sheldon Cottrell led the way with a career-best 4 for 28, while Shai Hope, who made 297 runs in the three-match ODI series, hit a whirlwind 55-run innings off just 23 balls.

After being dominated with both bat and ball by the reigning World champions, however, Sarker has vowed the team will recover.

“We are aiming a turnaround in the series strongly. In the past we have won the series against West Indies with a strong comeback after trailing 1-0. We are targeting to repeat it.  We have discussed our mistakes form the first match like too many early wickets at the beginning. We will ensure that such mistakes will not be repeated in the remaining matches and produce a better display of cricket all-around,” said Soumya


Windies pacer Sheldon Cottrell has hailed the team’s determination and aggression following a comfortable eight-wicket win over Bangladesh at Sylhet International Stadium on Monday.

The regional team had struggled to come to grips with life on the Asian tour so far, going down 2-1 to the hosts both the Test and ODI series.  The start of the T20I series, however, showed solid improvement.

Cottrell, who devastated the Bangladeshi ranks with pace and bounce, led the early onslaught, picking up 4 for 28, which was crucial in restricting the home side to 129 in 19 overs.

“Our plan in this game was to just bowl aggressive in whatever we do, whether bowling yorkers, length ball, short ball. Just to bowl aggressive, and it paid off,” Cottrell said.

In addition to Cottrell, batsman Shai Hope, who made 297 runs in the three-match ODI series, also took the attack to the Tigers as he fired a 55-run innings off just 23 balls.

“We just come together, it was just cricket on the day for me,” the 29-year-old Jamaica said.

Windies middle-order batsman, Shimron Hetmyer, despite not having the most consistent time with the bat since his international debut, has certainly turned some heads and made people, including former regional team batsman, Dwayne Smith. 

Former Windies opener Dwayne Smith believes Shai Hope a cricketer with prodigious talent and some of his performances, even on the ongoing tour of Bangladesh, are just the start of more from the top-order batsman. 

Shai Hope smashed the third-fastest fifty in international Twenty20 cricket as West Indies cruised to an eight-wicket victory in their series opener with Bangladesh on Monday.

After Sheldon Cottrell's 4-28 helped bowl Bangladesh out for 129 in Sylhet, the tourists surpassed their opponents' total inside 11 overs thanks mainly to opener Hope's explosive hitting.

The wicketkeeper-batsman hammered six sixes to reach his half-century from just 16 deliveries - only Yuvraj Singh (12) and Colin Munro (14) have managed the feat in fewer balls - before eventually falling to spinner Mahmudullah for 55.

Still, Hope's early onslaught - West Indies equalled the T20 record with 91 runs at the end of the six-over powerplay - secured a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

Nicholas Pooran and Keemo Paul steered their team home with 55 balls to spare, finishing up unbeaten on 23 and 28 respectively with the latter hitting three sixes in his 14-ball cameo.

Cottrell had laid the foundations for victory with a hostile spell of bowling, the paceman's career-best figures in the format seeing Bangladesh dismissed in 19 overs after they had elected to bat first.

Captain Shakib Al Hasan top-scored with 61 but was one of only three home batsmen to reach double figures, Mahmudullah (12) and Ariful Haque (17) the others to do so.

Bangladesh simply never recovered from a disappointing powerplay, Cottrell claiming two of four wickets to fall in the first six overs before returning later in the innings to end Shakib's lone hand, the left-hander's weak pull shot providing the bowler with a simple return catch.

Paul also picked up 2-23 from his four overs before making a contribution with the bat, though Hope's incredible knock was the highlight in a comprehensive triumph.

Opening batsman Evin Lewis and fast-bowlers Sheldon Cottrell and Kesrick Williams have been named to a 15-man Windies squad for their upcoming T20 series against their hosts Bangladesh.

Bangladesh eased to an eight-wicket win in their one-day international series decider against West Indies after Shai Hope's unbeaten century failed to lift his side's dismal display.

The Windies, led by Hope, had levelled the series in the last match, but the efforts of their star man were in vain on Friday as Bangladesh coasted after limiting the tourists to 198-9.

Opener Hope made 108 not out to somehow ensure his side batted out the innings, with none of his team-mates reaching more than 19 as Mehidy Hasan took four 4-29.

A second-wicket stand of 131 between Tamim Iqbal (81 not out) and Soumya Sarkar (80) all but got the job done for Bangladesh and they sealed victory by making 202-2 with 69 balls still remaining.

Although Mehidy swiftly removed Chandrapaul Hemraj (9) and then took care of Darren Bravo (10), it was not until Marlon Samuels (19) departed to Mohammad Saifuddin that the tourists' innings really fell apart.

From 96-2, with Hope starring, the Windies collapsed and Mehidy pressed home the advantage, taking the wickets of Shimron Hetmyer - for a six-ball duck - and captain Rovman Powell (1) in the same over.

Hope kept battling away, with nine fours and a maximum, but the Bangladesh bowlers were now enjoying themselves.

Shakib Al Hasan (2-40) took out Roston Chase (8) and Fabian Allen (6), before Mashrafe Mortaza (2-34) added another pair of dismissals as only Devendra Bishoo managed to protect his wicket and close the innings with Hope.

Bangladesh were in no rush with the bat, yet they made steady progress, suffering only a minor setback as Liton Das went for 23.

Both Hope and Kemar Roach were then forced out of the remainder of the match with injury, the former taking a knock to the head and the latter suffering hamstring spasms, to deal the Windies another blow.

And Tamim and Sarkar combined to do all the heavy lifting en route to victory, the dismissal of the latter to Keemo Paul coming far too late to derail Bangladesh.

Mushfiqur Rahim stepped in and made an unbeaten 16, including two fours and a six, before a pair of Tamim boundaries completed a comfortable chase.

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