AUS vs BAN: Ashton Agar hopeful of clinical performance from Australia to stay in race for semifinals

Spinner Ashton Agar has said that a whole squad effort is needed for Australia to beat Bangladesh and keep their hopes of making the semi-finals alive.

The slow left-armer replaced Mitchell Marsh in the XI against England but Justin Langer’s men suffered their first defeat of the ICC Men’s World Cup 2021, losing by eight wickets with 50 balls still to bowl, putting a dent in their net run rate. Agar is at risk of missing out on selection for the must-win Group 2 clash against Bangladesh in favour of all-rounder Marsh but understands that although everyone wants to play every game, it is more a case of horses for courses rather than being dropped.

“Naturally it’s really tough anytime you don’t get selected when you’ve been playing well. When it’s based around matchups or conditions, you understand that it’s part of being part of a really strong squad and doing what’s necessary for that game at that point in time, those conditions, that match-up, and that’s how we’ll go about our business,” Agar said in an official ICC release.

“So it’s not necessarily being dropped, it’s more about being not selected for that specific game and the guys who that’s happened to, it happened to me; it happened to Mitch. I’m sure you would have felt that emotion straight away as soon as you get the news, but I feel like we’ve moved on from that really well, and you do everything you can to help your mates out there because it certainly takes a squad to win these tournaments,” he added.

Australia knows all about the danger Bangladesh possess having lost 4-1 away to the Tigers in a T20 series over the summer.

However, Bangladesh has failed to fire in the Super 12s stage and will bow out of the tournament after Thursday’s game, having already lost to Sri Lanka, England, West Indies and South Africa.

“It’s probably the first time a lot of us have played in those conditions like that in Bangladesh, and we definitely found that challenging, and to be fair, Bangladesh played those conditions incredibly well, and we weren’t surprised that they played well at home, but it is very different now,” said Agar.

“We have a very different looking side, and the wickets certainly aren’t playing like those pitches that we played on over there. We’ll see what happens, I guess. We’ll go out there and we’ll try and put our best foot forward. We need to win, and the guys are really excited to play and really want to win, as well. It should be a good game,” he added.