Sophia Gardens at Cardiff will host the 12th match of ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 when England take on Bangladesh on June 8th. The home ground of Glamorgan county has a seating capacity of 15000 after redevelopment and hosted its debut fixture in the 1999 World Cup between New Zealand and Australia.
The Toss Factor
There is something against winning the toss and batting first at Cardiff – the teams winning the toss and opting to bat first have never won here. This has happened on six occasions. Teams opting to field first have won nine and lost seven of their matches. It's a tricky venue for captains, and the pitch and conditions aren't often well interpreted. Losing the toss has its advantages here as captains have won 13 and lost nine matches when the luck of the coin hasn’t gone their way.
The Team Scores
The team batting first has had considerably less success compared to the team fielding first. This is in sync with the toss factor at the ground. It's always better chasing at Sophia Gardens and this is evident from the fact that chasing sides have averaged 35.6 with the bat compared to 28.45 when sides have batted first. The run rate is also higher at 5.46 when chasing as against 5.23 when batting first.
The 2010s is the worst decade for batting here. The avegage at the venue since 2010 is 30.58 while in the 1990s and 2000s it was 32.48 and 34.79 respectively. The run rate, though, is considerably higher in 2010s at 5.55 as against 4.76 in 2000s.
The batting average at the venue overall is 29.4 and the strike rate is 82.9. There have been eight hundreds and 66 half-centuries recorded in the format at the venue. The bowling average is around the 33 mark and there have been 14 four-plus wicket hauls.
300 has been breached 10 times here with England's 342 against Australia in 2018 being the highest total. India's 331 against South Africa in the Champions Trophy 2013 comes next. 300, though, has been chased only once here with Pakistan defeating England in 2016.
Jos Buttler has the most runs at the venue (307 with four half-centuries) with Joe Root (276) and Jason Roy (254) following him. Liam Plunkett with 11 wickets is the most successful bowler. The highest score was recorded by Shaun Marsh in 2018 when he made 131 vs England. Ravindra Jadeja's 4/28 against England in 2014 are the best bowling figures here.
England have a good record at the venue with seven wins in 13 matches with three other games washed out. They have only lost thrice at Cardiff. But that's not to say Bangladesh have reasons to worry. They have won both the ODIs they have played at the venue and both have come in run chases. They famously beat Australia in 2005 while chasing and then beat New Zealand in the 2017 Champions Trophy quarter final, yet again while chasing.
World Cup 2019 has seen two matches at the venue with Sri Lanka beating Afghanistan by 34 runs in the last game here. In the other match, New Zealand beat Sri Lanka by 10 wickets after bowling them out for 136. England vs Bangladesh will be the third World Cup 2019 match at Cardiff Cricket Ground.