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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 10 December 2018

India have it all to lose against 'very good' Bangladesh in tri-series final, insists Dinesh Karthik

Despite missing Kohli and Dhoni, India are favourites to beat Bangladesh on Sunday

Dinesh Karthik, left, has said India must be at their best to beat Bangladesh in the tri-series final. Lakruwan Wanniarachchi / AFP
Dinesh Karthik, left, has said India must be at their best to beat Bangladesh in the tri-series final. Lakruwan Wanniarachchi / AFP

India wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik expects Bangladesh to prove tricky opposition, and insists that his team will bring high intensity to the Twenty20 tri-series final between the two sides on Sunday.

India were the first to book their place in the final after winning three of four games at Colombo's R Premadasa Stadium.

India hold a psychological edge going into the tournament decider, with a 7-0 record in T20s against Bangladesh. But Karthik said India would not take Bangladesh lightly after the Shakib Al Hasan-led team stunned Sri Lanka, beating the hosts by two wickets on Friday to reach the final.

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"In subcontinent conditions, [Bangladesh] are a very good team," Karthik said. "When we play Bangladesh, if we win, it's like 'OK, you've won against Bangladesh', but if we lose, it's like: 'Dude, you've lost to Bangladesh. What are you doing?'"

India went into the tournament without captain Virat Kohli and first-choice keeper MS Dhoni, and lost their opening match to Sri Lanka, but soon bounced back to win three straight games.

Karthik, a solid middle-order batsman who is mostly a second-choice wicketkeeper behind Dhoni, said the team has not lost focus in the absence of big names.

"The first thing [stand-in captain Rohit Sharma] ... said was that although we have a few of our other players missing, we're looking to play exactly the sort of cricket that we've played in the past one year. We're looking to win every match," Karthik said.

India are third in the world T20 rankings, with Pakistan at the top, while Bangladesh are 10th below Afghanistan.