Get off to a great start and build the momentum for the 2016 Asia Cup T20 title tilt – that, pretty much, will be what India and Bangladesh will be thinking going into the first match of this continental showpiece, which will be played at the Shere Bangla National Stadium.
India already have a fair bit of momentum with them, having beaten Australia and Sri Lanka in bilateral series' coming into this Asia Cup, but carrying those good vibes forward will be essential as all teams gear up for the World T20.
While winning this Asia Cup title is not the be-all-and-end-all, what a title victory will give the winning team is a huge confidence boost for the be-all-and-end-all tournament that is the World T20. As a result, doing well in the Asia Cup becomes important, something both India and Bangladesh will be aware of.
India will start this match in Mirpur as the favourites, despite Bangladesh being the hosts. MS Dhoni's men have been marked as the favourites to clinch the Asia Cup title as well, but India will do well to be wary of Bangladesh, who tripped them up spectacularly the last time these two teams met on these shores in coloured clothing.
This Bangladesh team are very much capable of beating any side in the world, and India need to be aware of the threats posed by the hosts. All it takes in the T20 game is for one player to have a blinder, and Bangladesh certainly have players with the talent to do that, both in the bowling and bating department.
The difference is that India have more of them, and players of a higher quality and experience. That could prove to be the key in this first T20 of the Asia Cup.
Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli will be the ones expected to give India that this-is-what-makes-all-the-difference advantage. All three of the top order batsmen have been in outstanding form, with the rest of the India batsmen left with very little to do, more often than not.
While relying too heavily on the top three can be dangerous, there is nothing wrong in expecting the seriously-talented trio to score the bulk of the runs. Such has been their form, that if Bangladesh do not stop them from scoring runs at the top, this match will be over in a hurry.
Mustafizur Rahman will be the key for Bangladesh in that aspect, and if the left-arm seam bowler can make the same impact as the last time these two teams met, this match will turn out to be a really close one. Allow Rohit, Kohli and Dhawan to catch fire, though, and India will walk away with an opening win in this 2016 Asia Cup T20.
Where to Watch Live
India vs Bangladesh is scheduled for a 7.30 pm local time (7 pm IST, 1.30 pm GMT, 8.30 am ET) start. Star Sports 1, Star Sports 3, Star Sports HD1 and Star Sports HD3 will provide live TV coverage of the match in India. Starsports.com and Hotstar are the websites to visit to watch the Asia Cup T20 match by online live streaming for viewers in India and the rest of the subcontinent.
Channel 9 and the Star network will broadcast the Asia Cup match live in Bangladesh, while MTV Sports and Star are the places to be to watch the action live in Sri Lanka. Pakistan viewers can watch India vs Bangladesh live on Geo Super, PTV and Star.
Audience in the Middle East and North Africa can watch Match 1 of the 2016 Asia Cup T20 live on OSN Sports Cricket HD. The live stream option for India vs Bangladesh in the same region is on OSN Play.