Caption - ICC Champions Trophy 2017. Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic

Bangladesh are one win away from their first final in a major tournament but whatever the outcome of their Champions Trophy semi-final against India on Thursday, it is clear the country’s long struggle in the game is now bearing fruit.

Bangladesh qualified for this year’s eight-nation Champions Trophy, having missed out on the last two editions, thanks to their improving fortunes in the one-day game combined with the decline of West Indies cricket.

The country has plenty of talent to choose from with a population of 160 million which is lower only than India and Pakistan among test-playing nations.

Steady progress enabled Bangladesh to win the ICC Trophy in 1997 and two years later they played in the full World Cup where they pulled off a famous victory over Pakistan.

Bangladesh have now claimed victories in one-day cricket against all the top nations, although their test record is poorer with just nine wins in 100 tests.

Two years ago in the World Cup, they beat and finished above England in their group to reach the quarter-finals, where they lost to Thursday’s opponents India.

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