Spinners set up Bangladesh's 2-0 lead
Bangladesh 177 for 3 (Nafees 73, Kayes 50) beat New Zealand 173 (Taylor 62*, Shuvo 3-14) by 7 wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Bangladesh took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series, and won two consecutive ODIs against top-flight opposition for the first time in their 232-match history, by cruising to a seven-wicket victory in the third one-dayer at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium in Mirpur. The stage was set for Bangladesh's batsmen after their spinners had decimated the New Zealand line-up - and they didn't disappoint, hunting down the meagre total of 173 in 40 overs, ensuring the visitors had to win both the remaining matches to draw the five-match contest.
The trio of Bangladesh's left-arm spinners were into the game early after Shafiul Islam had removed the dangerous Brendon McCullum in the first over, and they tore out the heart of the New Zealand batting line-up, reducing them to 101 for 7 in the 33rd over. A belligerent 72-run association between Ross Taylor and Kyle Mills revived the innings, but a total of 173 was always going to be tough to defend, especially with the New Zealand seam bowlers yet to find their radar on this rain-ridden tour.
The Bangladesh openers began positively in pursuit of New Zealand's total, smartly putting away bad balls through point and down the ground to reach 35 for no loss after five overs, before the lunch break interrupted their progress. Not much changed after the stoppage, though, as both batsmen continued to pick up regular boundaries, with a particularly handsome on-drive from Imrul Kayes standing out. The fifty came in just 7.4 overs and not even the introduction of the ever- threatening Daniel Vettori - so often the bane of Bangladesh in these one-day encounters - could prevent the batsmen from scoring over five an over with relative ease. It was a day when everything was going right for them.
Shahriar Nafees was effective square of the wicket on the off side, and he brought up his half-century with a cover drive off Andy McKay in the 16th over. Neither batsmen was troubled by the wayward bowling and they rotated strike intelligently, with the more circumspect Kayes feeding the strike to his aggressive partner.
The century partnership between the Bangladesh openers was only the third such stand in 19 matches against New Zealand. By the time Nafees chipped Nathan McCullum to mid-on for a run-a-ball 73, only 47 runs were required for victory. Imrul Kayes also fell soon after reaching his fifty, again trying to loft McCullum over cover, but the Bangladesh middle order ensured that the home team got home with plenty of overs and wickets to spare.
This significant victory, however, had been set up in the first half of the match, when BJ Watling and Jesse Ryder's attempts to steadily rebuild the innings after the early loss of McCullum were thwarted by the hosts' spinners, who began operating at both ends after just eight overs had been bowled by the fast bowlers. Both batsmen holed out trying to accelerate, and the wickets continued to fall in quick succession. Grant Elliott was bowled by a delivery from Shakib that broke sharply off the slowish surface, and Suhrawadi Shuvo added the scalps of Daniel Vettori and Shanan Stewart to the wicket of Ryder to complete his three-wicket haul.
McCullum didn't last long at the crease either, leaving the New Zealand innings in tatters. Taylor, who had played a lone hand, finally found some support in Mills, and the pair went about setting a new New Zealand record for the eighth wicket, scoring 72 runs off 64 deliveries. Taylor was typically strong on the leg side, slamming four sixes and four fours in his unbeaten innings of 62, Mills also smacked three magnificent sixes down the ground.
Despite the expensive period of play for Bangladesh, it was business as usual following the wicket of Mills, as Mahmudullah dismissed Tim Southee and Andy McKay in successive deliveries to end the innings. The total was made to look extremely average by a Bangladesh top order that seems to be growing in confidence in the one-day format.